Dark Angel

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  1. I am not a chemist, so may be barking up the wrong tree. However, I will proceed into the unknown. Large quantities of nitro glycerine were required as a propellant in the production of cordite. In liquid form it is highly unstable and extremely difficult to transport, needing to be kept cool at all times. This would necessitate it's manufacture at the site of the blending with other elements to produce a paste. This would form a 'cake' mixture which would be warmed in stoving houses. I think the odd elliptical shapes on Cliff Tons map could be these.The earth works indicate that something explosive was around this site. If you look on google maps, it can be seen that the gulag building is surrounded by steps indicating varying levels. This manufacturing process tended to be carried out in small locations in the event of something going wrong, thereby ensuing production continued elsewhere. Also some locations converted to the manufacture of shells weren't large enough to carry out this activity.
  2. Another thought! Maybe the Zeppelin was after this location when he bombed the brick works. He wasn't far off his target, if indeed he knew about it.
  3. Just had a memory alert! Can now remember being told that the tunnels on the Suburban Railway were used for storing ammunition trains. This being the unofficial reason for the station closures in 1916. May be there is a connection? The official reason for their closures was put down to staff shortages, due to the war.
  4. Thanks Fly for the recommendation, it is a good book. The picture you referred to was taken when Annesley turntable was under maintenance, as you say Annesley was capable of turning 9F's. i know the Western Region weren't keen on their locomotives going to Annesley due to the hard water. 9F's working to Nottingham on passenger trains would have been turned at Bagthorpe. Having said this, I have seen Halls at Annesley. In fact, they infamously "borrowed" one for weekend ballast workings. maybe they went to Annesley if they needed "fitters attention"!
  5. If you compare Cliff Ton's map with google maps, you can clearly see one of the funny buildings remains as a crop mark in a field. I don't think this particular one is shown on his map. Hut 9 appears to still be there, along with another possible that doesn't have a number, located to the left of hut 9. You can also see the pathway through the trees just above it. The earthworks around these buildings is puzzling, and points to some form of military use. The curved pathways could allude to some form of movement of shells. Another strange feature which may or may not have any bearing, but a house on Blythe Street has an observation room on it's roof. Not all World War 1 military installations were recorded as such. I can't find any reference to Mapperley being used as a military hospital, but then again the powers wouldn't have necessarily wanted the public to know about the mental state of their armed forces. Bagthorpe is recorded as a military hospital at this time. Doesn't answer the question though.
  6. Compo's photograph is missing, but I know which it is as I regularly look through Chris Ward's Annesley web pages. Am pleased you have found a photograph of the stored coaches, as I was wondering if I had remembered correctly. Have also taken Fly's recommendation and purchased The Back Line. I seem to recollect that 9F's had a route availability issue on the Leen Valley Line. The only stretch I have seen photographs is on the Bagthorpe Junction triangle where they were sometimes turned, being too large for Victoria's turntable. Someone will now produce a photograph and prove me wrong. Such is life!
  7. It should read Queens Walk, not Queens Road. Another senior moment!! The locomotive shed was actually called Arkwright Street, although most people knew it as QueensWalk, as it was situated adjacent to that siding and warehouses. It was officially closed as an engine shed in 1909, although used for stabling purposes afterwards, it's locomotive allocation being transferred to Annesley.
  8. Railway lines have a small electric current passing through them. As a train passes over them it creates a short circuit enabling the signal man to know he has a train in a certain section. Leaves on the line create a problem, they become impacted onto the rail and become an insulator so the flim flam trains of today don't create a short circuit, thereby becoming invisible to the signal man. (A visual indication in his signal box disappears, not the train entering a twilight zone.)
  9. Wrigleys cut up some of Gresley's O2 locomotives, mainly Grantham ones off the High Dyke workings. Loads of 16t wagons were cut up there. Am sure I'm right about the coaches. They weren't anywhere near Hereford Road though, as I remember, they were adjacent to the City Hospital.
  10. Bubblewrap is right. The council did get the railway company to carry out a slum clearance on their behalf. Charging them compensation for the privaledge of doing so. The majority of these slum dwellers moved to other slum areas as they couldn't afford the rents of the new properties built to replace their homes. Compensation going to the owners, not the tenents. Close to 6000 people were evicted from this area. Twenty public houses were demolished, five in a sixty yard stretch in one street. The man who acted as agent for the Great Central Railway and the engineer building the section through Nottingham were both directors of the Nottingham Brick Company. Both worked together on the Nottingham Suburban Railway. I seem to recollect that the compensation alone cost half a million pounds. Nottingham was going to be an interchange station for locomotives. That's why two turntables were constructed. A locomotive maintenance shed was to be built at Bulwell, with a smaller servicing shed at Queens Road. Only the Queens Road shed actually got built along with carriage sheds at Bulwell, however a long standing dispute with Nottingham council over rates etc, caused the Great Central to abandon their plans for Bulwell; building their maintenance shed at Annesley instead, as the county council were more accommodating. If Bulwell had been built, they would have had A3's allocated and not Leicester. Queens Road never opened as an engine shed, but was used as a stabling point for a few years. The shed Forman never took up his duties there, being transferred straight to Annesley. A photograph exists of this shed with a K3 awaiting its next duty. The bay window of a brick building was to have been the formans office. Maybe the railways hierarchy realised they had been had. It makes you wonder how much influence the Midland Railway had on this chain of events. There was no way the Midland Railway would have ever countered the 1881 plan. They wouldn't have agreed on night following day with the Great Northern Railway. As an aside, there is a fantastic blog about Annesley, created by Chris Wild, an ex fireman at Annesley.
  11. Yes, I remember coaches being stored on this line. Am sure they were left there longer than they should have been as many of them had their white metal bearings stolen. Can vaguely remember a conversation with my dad about them. I think Wrigleys wagon works eventually disposed of them, but am not completely sure about this. I also think I have seen a couple of photographs, again not sure. Was a long time ago.
  12. Sadly, if it wasn't for your captions I wouldn't know what I was looking at. I don't recognise Nottingham anymore. Haven't set foot in the place for 15/18 years. Over time, successive 'I'm in charge merchants' have systematically ripped the heart and soul out of what was once a great place. Nottingham has always had strong historical connections: all three English civil wars kicked off in Nottingham. We can rival York for the Vikings. Isabella - Mortimer - Edward II plus Edward III. King John. How many Nottingham children are taught any of this? Mathilda and Stephen had a tiff. Mathilda stayed in Nottingham Castle. One of Stephens men tried to take the castle, failed, sacked Nottingham. Burnt down the churches with all those seeking refuge still inside. This being the fate of the first St Mary's. Did you take any photographs of the stained glass windows?
  13. Cliff Ton ... Thank you for your response. I do have a query: I seem to have got some hearts and arrows, I assume the hearts are people liking what I have written. Do the arrows indicate that it's my round for the cider? Sorry, as I think this is maybe in the wrong place.
  14. All the pictures seem to have either disappeared or are blurred. Remember talking my parents into travelling via Grantham for our holidays on the South coast. I wanted to be pulled by a nice green shiny Pacific locomotive. On this occasion, St Simon glides into the platform, pleased my plan is working we board the train. Shock! Horror! Having just settled into our seats, St Simon glides past light engine having been detached from our train. Worse was about to happen: a brand new shiny diesel (D 1502) backs onto our train. "Can we get off and wait for the next one? " says I. That suggestion didn't go down too well, and we stayed on board. I realised that it would soon be goodnight to these marvellous elegant beasts, and disillusionment set in. A couple of years before, I had again eagerly awaited the arrival of one of these wonderful behemoths, only to be disappointed when the blue Deltic turned up. I must have been the only one disappointed at this development, as all the trainspotters were wild with excitement. Not I. It was like waking up Christmas morning expecting a nice shiny new bicycle, only to be confronted with a trumpet! The writing being on the wall for these dinasaurs as the rot took hold and they were allowed to deteriorate, before disappearing to that train set in the sky. I didn't need to stand on a cold platform to watch the Lincoln mail train. I sat on my bed in a warm bedroom to watch it. until the final throw of the dice, the loco was always an Eastern region one, often a named B1. Geoffrey Gibbs seemed to haul it more than most. It always seemed to be kept in fairly good condition at the time. The final days before diesels took over, black 5's had a go. As modernity took over, train spotting lost its allure. Couldn't get excited watching boxes on wheels.