Saturday, 23 March 2019

Exploring the Rishworth Branch Line.

The Rishworth Branch Line was a double track railway that ran from Sowerby Bridge through the villages of Triangle and Ripponden before terminating at Rishworth near Slitheroe Bridge. The plan had been to continue on to the main line at Smithy Bridge, Greater Manchester by tunnelling under the moor but sadly despite the surveys being done this plan was abandoned due to cost overruns and land slip issues with the line already built. 

The line opened in 2 stages with the first section from Sowerby Bridge to Ripponden completed in 1878, and then the final stretch to Rishworth opening in 1881. Stations were added at Triangle in 1885 and Watson Crossing Halt in 1907. The line was already in decline by the end of the first world war and in 1929 was closed to passengers, with goods services continuing to Rishworth until 1953 and Triangle and Ripponden until the 1st September 1958. The track was removed between then and 1961 and the line was left to abandonment and nature. Despite this many of the bridges remain as well as Scar Head Tunnel (inaccessible), and even the station platform at Rishworth although overgrown still remain. It must have been a great regret to the railway company that the lines completion to Lancashire near happened, had it done so I have wonder if it would still be open with 1 station serving the villages of Triangle, Ripponden and Rishworth.

The video is taken from my YouTube channel and features images from when the line was in operation as well as pictures taken in 2013 and 2017 along the disused trackbed.

The images from 2013 and 2017 are my own personal pictures, the pictures taken from the days of the lines operation I searched for as public domain and believe them to be so, if I am incorrect I will be happy to add a credit to the video for the pictures owner.
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