Railways around Peterborough & The National Rail Network & Heritage railways in the UK
The Peterborough Fly-ash Line at Fletton
This railway line is now closed and the track and the fly-ash plant removed.
This line came off the ECML next to the NVR line at Fletton Juction
Class 56 044 on a full fly-ash train on the Fletton fly-ash line. The ECML is behind the ready mixed plant. There was one track in and one out. This was the same track having run around a lake.
When the brick yards around Peterborough began to close, as the raw material, clay ran out, large "knot holes" were left. Some of these were full of water and some just a blot on the landscape. There would have been more clay to dig out around Peterborough, but over the years houses were built on what could have been clay pits.
The coal fired power stations made tons of ash of a very fine type known as fly-ash. Some were to put this ash was needed. The clay pits around Peterborough were chosen, with transport by rail. Presfro wagons which had been used for cement were what the ash was to be transported in.
As the power stations had merry go round facilities, this was also put in place at the Peterborough end. A new railway line was made from Fletton junction to a plant which then pumped the ash out with water and pumped this slurry which was a semi-liquid mixture of fine ash particles and water into the old clay pits were the ash sunk to the bottom and the water was later pumped away. When the pit was nearly full top soil was placed on the ash. The new Peterborough township of Hampton with its many new houses and a large Tesco store was once clay pits.
Class 47 206 waits to discharge its load of fly-ash. This train of fly-ash wagons has run around a clay pit which was full of water which was used to pump the ash out before the train returned to the the power stations for more without needing to uncouple in the true merry go round tradition
This photo of the same flyash train which was taken in the winter as during the summer the trees hid this part of the line which was next to the A15 road, near the new roundabout at Hampton not far from the Hampton Tesco.
This part of this fly-ash line was built around a large water filled worked out brick pit. The track was a large loop which trains travelled around the lake in a clockwise direction. The class 47 is waiting at the signal if another train is discharging it load or the plant is not ready, before moving in the plant and discharging its load of fly ash. The water in the lake was used to make the slurry that was pumped into the pits to be filled then the water pumped back into the lake.
The Fly-ash line this time with a Class 56. Having been around the loop around the lake the class 56 is moving up one of the signals placed about 30ft apart at a time, as the fly-ash is discharged from the wagons.
The Fly-ash line from the other side with Class 47007. Having been around the loop around the lake the class 47 is moving up past one of the signals placed about 30ft apart as the fly-ash is discharged from the wagons.
Were these two photos above of the class 56 and 47007 were after discharging there loads, there are new houses ,were the track was just the bridges remain.
The ECML is about 200yards from the photo above
A up HST at Wymans Bridge on a very cold morning.
These wagons were used to move cray between the pits and the kilms.
Note the wagons pulled along by a rope. These turn over the bridge to the right and share part of the bridge with a small foot path which may have been a busy road when all the brick yards were open. This bridge was rebuilt for the overhead wires by which time the wagon way(?) had been removed.
There is a now in 2014 a large Ika warehouse on the other side of a new bridge put in when the wires came.
Page updated 13/5/2020
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