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Newbold Heritage Group New Lount Colliery Heritage Trail Board 5

An explanation of how the rail sidings worked

In 1924 a line, around 1 mile long, was built between the Midland's Derby to Ashby line and the colliery, partly following the route of the old Coleorton Railway, and including the Newbold tunnel, some 70 yards long. This line crossed the Melbourne road and entered the colliery as a single line. At the Midland's line end a triangle arrangement was constructed with two sidings on the western side to hold empty wagons and three sidings to the east to hold loaded wagons. A further siding came off the third siding on the loaded sidings, to feed coal into Newbold Pipe Works. These sidings were modified and extended in 1930. Also in 1930 a further siding was put into the west sidings to serve the Leicestershire Coal Distillation Co.Ltd. (Became British Coal Distillation Ltd in 1932). Eventually the New Lount proved to unsuitable for coal distillation and Bestwood coal was used in place of it. The experiment did not prove to be a success and the plant was closed down and cleared before the start of the war in 1939. The sidings were retain as additional space for empty wagons.

In 1934 there were further developments to the railway system with a new despatch office was built down the line just before the tunnel. Also a completely new Landsale yard was constructed, including a raised wagon ramp with storage chutes, a lorry yard and roads, offices and a weighbridge. Two dozen wagons could be accommodated and the whole facility ensure a more rapid loading and despatch of lorries.

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During the 1950's  and the early 1960's there were normally four trains of empties worked into the empties sidings and four trains of fulls taken out of the sidings by British Rail on a daily basis. Around 1963 this reduced down to about 3 trains a day when an increasing amount of coal was being transported by lorry; with five special loading points having been installed beneath the screens.

New Loco Shed.

When the two diesel shunters arrived a new two-rail shed was built to house them. This was sited at the front of the screens on the opposite side of the tracks, the line leading to it coming off the line along which the empties were brought up to the head-shunt.

Trail Trail Board 6