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Thanks go to John Blurton from Stafford for providing the following information:The newspaper article above referred to the 9.33pm Stafford to Shrewsbury train which was indeed the last train to stop at Gnosall in the down direction, and on its return at 11.25pm was the last scheduled passenger train on the line. However, it passed through Gnosall without stopping, making the 10.40pm Wellington - Stafford the last scheduled passenger train to stop at Gnosall (and also at all the intermediate stations between Wellington and Stafford).The driver was Cliff Emery, the fireman was John Blurton & the guard if I remember correctly was Harold Johnson all of Stafford.The engine was a Fairburn class 4 tank engine No 42104.
1880There was only one building alongside the north platform at the top of a curved ramp.
1900The platforms have been extended with the additional buildings offering travellers some protection against the weather.Also - steps leading from the road to the south platform.
1920The map on the left shows an addition of a bay running behind the platform on the north side.
Gnosall StationThis is a plan of the station platform from drawings dated 1891. Click on the plan for details about the buildings.
The railway linked Shrewsbury to Stafford and was opened in June 1849. At Gnosall the event appears to have been very low key. The Staffordshire Advertiser reported“We presume that the present Station House at Gnosall is merely temporary. There is a paltry wooden hut in which the clerk and a passenger would find it difficult to exchange a ticket for money without jostling each other”.But the railway was a very important part of the village for many years. The Station was open from 6.00am till 11.00pmThe Platforms were on the East side of the main road. Access was from up a slope on one side and by steps on the other. There was a Goods Yard on the other side of the road. with sidings and a weighbridge. A shunting engine came from Stafford every day about 11 O’clock to move the goods wagons around. In the mid 1900s the car became more popular and less people used the railway and it was decided to close the Stafford - Shrewsbury line along with many other routes based on the “Beeching Report”Eventually on 6th September 1964, the last train stopped at Gnosall. By 1976 all the railway track had been removed and it was decided to remove the bridge over the road.Full details of the Shrewsbury to Stafford line can be found in “The Shropshire Union Railway” book by Bob Yate
Many thanks to the following people for allowing their photos to be used: D. Ingram, M. Armstrong, R. Haycock, E. Talbot, R. Yate
At 9.40 p.m. on Sunday, September 6th, Gnosall's ailing railway station finally died at the age of 115.A fatal blow was struck some months ago when the Beeching Axe severed the station's weak link with its by no means robust parent, the British Railway system.Cause of death was neglect and starvation due to an ever declining supply of fare paying passenger food. Attempts to pump new life into the patient were too little and too late. Death had long been inevitable. Its end was a royal occasion. A 20 detonator salute was fired as the last train shuffled sadly away.About 100 mourners stood by the corpse, old ex-passengers and the young of the car age.They filed away as the station lights flickered and finally went out. Though the station is dead its ghost lives on. Its hauntings will take the form of occasional trains rumbling through The ghostly rumbling will be clearly heard by fifty-five year old Bill Cooper, a railwayman for over 30 years and a Gnosall porter for 15, watched the last of the passengers and mourners walk away from his dead station. "I didn't expect to see so many," he said. Minutes before Bill, fellow porter Albert Tagg and young station master Stanley Griffiths had shaken hands with the crew of the last train - a ritual that had dominated events of the past week.“In 25 years you really get to know the crews well," Bill added sadly. On Saturday Bill had reverently hung a wreath on the last official train at Gnosall, a steam engine. On Sunday the wreath was back-on a diesel. This unexpected caller lengthened by 24 hours the life of the station. It was ordered to stop so that "Newsletter" photographers could make a pictorial record.The railway enthusiasts were there to show their appreciation of the service given by Gnosall station and the Stafford-Wellington line.
The following text might help explain what was being said….Gnosall ticket office was moved to Shrugborough but is on loan to the Foxfield Railway.Polish refugees - to the north of Wheaton Aston village in Staffordshire between Marston and Little Onn along the Shropshire Union Canal is a disused WW2 airfield built in 1941 as "Service Training School No. 21" for foreign pilots, mainly Americans. After the war the camp was abandoned and in 1947 some of the accommodation was used a " transit depot" for the Polish Resettlement Corps. A large number of Polish people arrived by train at Gnosall and passed through Wheaton Aston on their way to the USA, Canada and other parts of the world but many stayed and made their homes in the prefab huts which were situated on 4 sites to the west of the airfield.Evacuees - on 2nd June 1940 563 children and 20 adults arrived in Gnosall by train from schools in Margate and Ramsgate. Colonel Hargreaves - lived at Knightlety Grange (about 1 mile north of Gnosall).Cheese Factory was run by Mr Woodfield and his daughter and her husband Mr Freeman. It was located where Waterside Court is today. Some 600 pigs were also kept there, managed by Lewis Palmer.Mr Leese - did deliveries for the railway using old model “T” ford.
Interview from 1970 with Jim Beech who started work on the railway in 1911.
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