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Hatton Station

GWR Route: Banbury to Wolverhampton

GWR Route: Hatton to Bearley and Alcester Branch

Hatton Station was one of nine intermediate stations on the Birmingham and Oxford Junction Railway (B&O), which ran from Fenny Compton to Birmingham. This mixed gauge line was owned by the Great Western Railway and opened on 1st October 1852. Hatton was the site of unfortunate collision on the day before the public opening, when a special train carrying the director's party collided with another train injuring six passengers. The station was on a short section of level track in what was an unbroken gradient from Warwick to 1 mile north of the station, known as the Hatton Bank. The majority of this 5 mile climb was 1 in 110 and banking engines were a frequent sight at Hatton. Another common site here were the slip coaches for Stratford upon Avon. On 10th October 1860 Hatton became a junction when a 9½ mile, mixed gauge, single line branch to Stratford upon Avon opened. On 1st April 1869 the mixed gauge on both the main line and branch was converted to standard gauge only and in 1883 the nominally independent Stratford-upon-Avon railway Company was amalgamated into the GWR.

By 1892 traffic demands required the platforms to be extended and the provision of additional sidings and in July 1897 the triangular junction was formed by the creation of the north (avoiding) curve, which allowed trains from Birmingham to proceed to Stratford upon Avon and beyond without reversing at Hatton. This triangular junction required two more signal boxes (Hatton North and Hatton Branch), but the turntable was removed a few years later in 1913. Station and track improvements continued with the provision of the down platform and branch bay canopy in 1897, conversion of refuge sidings to goods loops in June 1901 and the extension of the down goods line from Budbrook to Hatton in May 1914. This down goods line was 2¼ miles long and could officially accommodate an engine, 467 wagons and brakevan, although down mineral trains hauled by group D engines (GW 26xx, 43xx and 49xx classes) were limited to 36 wagons (increased to 54 wagons with banking engine assistance) and those hauled by group E engines (GW 28xx and 47xx classes) 44 wagons (66 wagons if banked).

The goods facilities was very small being limited to two short sidings, accessed by rail from either end of the up platform. Access by road vehicle to the two sidings was via the same approach road off Station Road that passengers took to enter the main station building. The long siding seen running adjacent to the platform used by trains to and from Stratford on Avon was for railway traffic only, there being no road access to this area of the station. Closed to goods traffic on 11th November 1963.

In the winter of 1936/37 the Middle and South Signal Boxes were replaced with a new South Signal Box on the down platform and this simplified the operating requirements for trains on the branch bay platform. In July 1939 the Branch between Hatton and Bearley was doubled and the Branch Signal Box was renamed Hatton West Junction. In 1968 the track was rationalised with many loops and sidings being removed and the North Curve singled. The following year the branch to Bearley was singled and the three Hatton signal Boxes were closed. All signalling operations became the responsibility of the Saltley Power Box on 1st September 1969. Hatton Station is still open today although many of the station buildings no longer exist.

Robert Ferris

Kevin Jones writes, 'One little tale about the triangular junction at Hatton from my father and mother. Shortly after WW2 the railway was transporting a load of bananas - probably one of the first into the country after, as my father puts it, "the recent hostilities". Unfortunately the refrigeration equipment on the ship had been faulty, and the whole trainload spoiled in the railway wagons. Somebody, somewhere, in the railway officialdom decided that the best way of getting rid of them was to tip them in the middle of the triangular junction at Hatton and cover them with earth.

As dad says, the junction is the size of a football pitch, just about, and it was pretty filled up with rotting bananas and earth. Anyway, the inevitable happened - the lot fermented, and there was probably spontaneous combustion going on. Large amounts of steam and, periodically, smoke started erupting. The railway authorities contacted the local fire brigade who ran hosepipes from the local canal, under the embankment, into the massive pile of decomposing bananas in the hope of solving the problem and cooling it down. Wrong move!

The fermentation going on went mad - a bit like having porridge on the boil. In fact the fermentation went on for years afterwards - a fresh fall of rain, and it would be off again - with plumes of smoke and steam, and ghastly aromatic smells wafting round the area, and warning signs leaning over to one side as things festered violently underneath them. Mum remarked that the smell was appalling - she knew the story firsthand, living in Leamington. Dad, who had to go up and down the line when he was on National Service, picked it up from a local - he was puzzled as to why this area was forever belching steam, smoke and pongs. Now this - fiasco - happened, they think, in the late 40s. It was still bubbling merrily away in the mid 50s. I've no idea how long it would have continued.

It would appear to be a story that was well known in the area at the time, but which has since been long forgotten. Suffice to say that they never asked biologists about the rationale of the disposal scheme. One biologist I told it to could see what was coming and fell about laughing before we got to the culmination - then pointed out that the pongs would have consisted of various alcohols, ethylene and god knows what! She also pointed out that if you put a steel bar in a compost heap of 1 metre cube and pull it out, the end will be too hot to touch, so she'd hate to think what temperature this heap would have got up to'.

The station buildings and adjacent infrastructure

Looking towards Leamington from the up platform prior to the signal box being erected on the down platform
Ref: gwrhj1880
J Alsop
Looking towards Leamington prior to Hatton South signal box being erected on the down platform
Close up of an unknown GWR 0-6-0 goods engine leaving the down refuge siding at the head of a long cattle train
Ref: gwrhj1880b
J Alsop
Close up of an unknown GWR 0-6-0 goods engine leaving the down refuge siding at the head of a long cattle train
A view of a busy Hatton Station looking east towards Warwick from the road bridge
Ref: gwrhj107
Postcard
Hatton Station looking from the road bridge to Warwick with the main station building and forecourt on the left
Close up of the main up platform, showing male passengers alighting and the main station concourse
Ref: gwrhj107b
Postcard
Close up showing Hatton's up platform, with mainly male passengers alighting from the train's coaches
An unidentified GWR double framed 4-4-0 locomotive arrives at Hatton station's up platform circa 1910
Ref: gwrhj1879
J Alsop
An unidentified GWR double framed 4-4-0 locomotive arrives at Hatton station's up platform circa 1910

View along the down platform looking towards Birmingham with the main station building on the up platform on the right
Ref: gwrhj106
Anon
Looking to Birmingham along the down platform with the main station building on the up platform on the right
Close up showing the main island platform buildings
Ref: gwrhj106a
Anon
Close up showing the building on Hatton's island platform which was built in brick with a plain gable and slate roof
Close up showing the covered station footbridge and road bridge behind
Ref: gwrhj106b
Anon
Close up showing the covered station footbridge and road bridge behind the signal box standing on the platform
Close up showing the up platform building, a grounded coach body and corrugated iron buildings
Ref: gwrhj106c
Anon
Close up showing Hatton's main station building and a grounded coach body and corrugated iron buildings
General view of station looking towards Warwick taken in about 1933
Ref: gwrhj103
Anon
Looking towards Warwick circa 1933 prior to the erection of Hatton South signal box on the island platform

Close up showing the up platform and station sign declaring 'Hatton Junction for Bearley Alcester & Stratford upon Avon'
Ref: gwrhj103a
Anon
Close up showing one of the station sign declaring 'Hatton Junction for Bearley Alcester & Stratford upon Avon'
Close up showing the trackwork to the south of the station together with the original Hatton South Signal Box
Ref: gwrhj103b
Anon
Close up of the trackwork to the south of the station together with the original Hatton South Signal Box
Close up showing the down island platform
Ref: gwrhj103c
Anon
Close up of the down island platform and the reasonably extensive facilities for a small country junction station
Looking from Station Road from above the north up siding towards Hatton South Signal Box on the island platform
Ref: gwrhj1889
Lens of Sutton
Looking from Station Road from above the north up siding towards the Signal Box on the island platform
View of Hatton station's main timber framed and clad building housing the booking office and waiting room
Ref: gwrhj1922
J Moss
View of Hatton station's main timber framed and clad building housing the booking office and waiting room

Hatton's main passenger building located on the up platform as seen circa 1960 from the passenger footbridge
Ref: gwrhj1928
J Moss
The main passenger building located on the up platform as seen circa 1960 from the passenger footbridge
Looking towards Birmingham from the Warwick end of Hatton station's up platform in 1956
Ref: gwrhj1934
RM Casserley
Looking towards Birmingham from the Warwick end of Hatton station's up platform in 1956
Looking north from the passenger footbridge towards Station Road and Hatton South Junction
Ref: gwrhj1935
J Moss
Looking north from the passenger footbridge towards Station Road and Hatton South Junction
Looking towards Warwick beneath Station Road bridge showing the building housing the new signalling equipment
Ref: gwrhj1882
W Wright
Looking towards Warwick beneath Station Road bridge showing the building housing the new signalling equipment
View of Hatton's island platform viewed from Station Road with the siding accessed only by rail in the foreground
Ref: gwrhj1923
J Moss
View of Hatton's island platform viewed from Station Road with the siding accessed only by rail in the foreground

Hatton Station from the road bridge in June 1960 showing the second Hatton South Signal Box on the island platform
Ref: gwrhj1938
J Moss
Hatton Station from the road bridge in June 1960 showing the second Hatton South Signal Box on the platform
View of an accident at Hatton with damage being sustained to the platform and a derailed covered van in the siding
Ref: gwrhj1885
M Morant
View of an accident at Hatton with damage being sustained to the platform and a derailed covered van in the siding
A low resolution version of the Signalling Diagram for Hatton South Signal Box, showing the post 2nd July 1939 track layout
Ref: gwrhj1939
Signalling Record Society
A low resolution version of the Signalling Diagram for Hatton South Signal Box, showing the post July 1939 track layout
Map showing the layout of Hatton station, the branch line to Stratford on Avon and its goods facilities
Ref: gwrhj1881
Ordnance Survey
Map showing the layout of Hatton station, the branch line to Stratford on Avon and its goods facilities
Copy of the notice issued by the GWR in 1927 advising staff of the changes to Distant Signal arms and coloured lens
Ref: gwrhj2284
GWR
Copy of the notice issued by the GWR in 1927 advising staff of the changes to Distant Signal arms and coloured lens

Hatton North Junction

Looking towards Solihull with Shrewley Common overbridge in the distance and Hatton North Signal Box on the left
Ref: gwrhj1892
W Wright
Looking towards Solihull with Shrewley Common overbridge in the distance and Hatton North Signal Box on the left
Ex-GWR 4-6-0 No 4092 'Dunraven Castle' passes Hatton North Junction signals whilst at the head of an up express service
Ref: gwrhj1918
G Coltas
Ex-GWR 4-6-0 No 4092 'Dunraven Castle' on an up express service passes Hatton North Junction signals
Ex-GWR 4-6-0 No 5955 'Garth Hall' passes over Hatton North Junction with a down express service circa 1960
Ref: gwrhj1919
BPC
Ex-GWR 4-6-0 No 5955 'Garth Hall' passes over Hatton North Junction with a down express service circa 1960
BR built 4-6-0 No 7912 'Little Lingford Hall' leaves the Stratford on Avon branch for Birmingham Snow Hill
Ref: gwrhj1920
BPC
BR built 4-6-0 No 7912 'Little Lingford Hall' leaves the Stratford on Avon branch for Birmingham Snow Hill
Ex-GWR 2-8-0 No 3515 proceeds past Hatton West signal box with a train for Stratford on Avon in 1950
Ref: gwrhj1932
Milbrook House
Ex-GWR 2-8-0 No 3515 proceeds past Hatton West signal box with a train for Stratford on Avon in 1950

A farmers occupation bridge at Shrewley near Hatton is caught on camera as it is demolished by explosives
Ref: gwrhj1876
J Fancote
A farmers occupation bridge at Shrewley near Hatton is caught on camera as it is demolished by explosives
A low resolution version of the Signalling Diagram for Hatton North Signal Box, showing the post 3rd June 1901 track layout
Ref: gwrhj1940
Signalling Record Society
A low resolution version of the Signalling Diagram for Hatton North Signal Box, showing the post June 1901 track layout

Hatton West Junction

Looking towards the Birmingham to Leamington line with Hatton West Signal Box on the right on 17th August 1969
Ref: gwrhj1883
W Wrighr
Looking to the Birmingham to Leamington line with Hatton West Signal Box on the right on 17th August 1969
A DMU driver on a service to Stratford on Avon is about to exchange the token with the signalman from Hatton West Signal Box
Ref: gwrhj1933
D Wittamore
A DMU driver on a service to Stratford on Avon is about to exchange the token with the signalman from Hatton West
Hatton South Signal Box which was opened in January 1937 replacing the 'Middle and the old South Signal Box
Ref: gwrhj1893
W Wright
Hatton South Signal Box which was opened in January 1937 replacing the 'Middle and the old South Signal Box
An unknown GWR 4-6-0 Star class locomotive is seen at the head of a rake of GWR crimson lake liveried coaches
Ref: gwrhj1921
J Moss
Internal view of Hatton South Signal Box and Grade One relief signalman Jack Vine on the right in 1960

Hatton South Junction

Looking north from Station Road bridge showing Hatton Middle Signal Box located in the vee of the junction in 1929
Ref: gwrhj1930
C Gilbert
Looking north from Station Road bridge showing Hatton Middle Signal Box located in the vee of the junction
GWR 5101 class 2-6-2T Prairie No 5152 with Tyseley engineer's train coming to the rescue of the derailed Pontypool Rd Brakevan
Ref: gwrhj100
G Coltas
GWR 2-6-2T Prairie No 5152 with Tyseley engineer's train coming to the rescue of the derailed Brakevan
Close up of the Tyseley engineer’s train with a mess van, tool van and a 3 plank open
Ref: gwrhj100a
G Coltas
Close up of the Tyseley engineer’s train with a mess van, tool van and a 3 plank open wagon
Close up of the derailed brakevan, a 20ton brakevan to diagram AA13, constructed between 1913 and 1918
Ref: gwrhj100b
G Coltas
Close up of the derailed brakevan, a 20ton brakevan to diagram AA13, constructed between 1913 and 1918
GWR 4-6-0 Modified Castle (5098 class) No 7033 'Hartlebury Castle' on the up Cambrian Coast express
Ref: gwrhj101
Anon
GWR 4-6-0 Modified Castle (5098 class) No 7033 'Hartlebury Castle' on the up Cambrian Coast express

Close up of the activity behind the up Cambrian Coast Express
Ref: gwrhj101a
Anon
Close up showing a train attacking the climb up Hatton Bank awhilst a goods train stands in the refuge siding
An unidentified ex-GWR 4-6-0 'Modified Hall' locomotive crosses the junction at the head of an up express service
Ref: gwrhj1888
M Morant
An unidentified ex-GWR 4-6-0 'Modified Hall' locomotive crosses the junction at the head of an up express service
An unidentified ex-GWR Prairie is seen on the up line running bunker first back to Warwick station
Ref: gwrhj1890
RM Casserley
An unidentified ex-GWR Prairie is seen on the up line running bunker first back to Warwick station

Locomotives and Railcars

A view from the Birmingham end of the station with ex-LSWR T9 4-4-0 No 313 on a down Sunny Coast express train
Ref: gwrhj108
WL Good
View from the Solihull end of the station with ex-LSWR T9 4-4-0 No 313 on a down Sunny Coast express train
Close up showing the immaculately turned out ex-LSWR locomotive at the head of an down express train
Ref: gwrhj108a
WL Good
Close up showing the immaculately turned out ex-LSWR locomotive at the head of an down express train
GWR 0-4-2T No 55 crosses from the Stratford upon Avon branch on to the main line August 1925
Ref: gwrhj920
WL Good
GWR 0-4-2T No 55 crosses from the Stratford upon Avon branch on to the main line August 1925
View of GWR 2-8-2T No 7238 after running in to a Luftwaffe bomb crater at Budbrook near Hatton on 17th May 1941
Ref: gwrhj1339
British Railways
View of GWR 2-8-2T No 7238 after running in to a Luftwaffe bomb crater at Budbrook near Hatton on 17th May 1941
Close up of an unidentified 3031 (Achilles) class 4-2-2 locomotive on a waiting Stratford-upon-Avon train
Ref: gwrhj107a
Postcard
Close up of an unidentified GWR Achilles class 4-2-2 locomotive at the head of the Stratford-upon-Avon train

Close up of the unidentified GWR 2-4-2T 36xx class locomotive getting ready to depart for Stratford on Avon
Ref: gwrhj1880a
J Alsop
Close up of the unidentified GWR 2-4-2T 36xx class locomotive getting ready to depart for Stratford on Avon
GWR 4-6-0 No 2945 'Hillingdon Court passes Hatton's home starter signal on an up service to London
Ref: gwrhj1894
P Hopkins
GWR 4-6-0 No 2945 'Hillingdon Court passes Hatton's home starter signal on an up service to London
An unknown GWR 4-6-0 Star class locomotive is seen at the head of a rake of GWR crimson lake liveried coaches
Ref: gwrhj1927
VR Webster
United States Army Transport Corps S120 Class 2-8-0 No 2138 leaves the up loop siding with a long coal train
GWR Railcar No 29 complete with a trailing coach on a Leamington to Stratford on Avon service circa 1942
Ref: gwrhj1929
VR Webster
GWR Railcar No 29 complete with a trailing coach on a Leamington to Stratford on Avon service circa 1942
Ex-GWR 4-6-0 No 6024 'King Edward I' heads the 9:10am Paddington to Birkenhead service on 23rd September 1957
Ref: gwrhj1878
M Mensing
Ex-GWR 4-6-0 No 6024 'King Edward I' heads the 9:10am Paddington to Birkenhead train on 23rd September 1957

Light engine GWR 78xx class 4-6-0 No 7818 Granville Manor at the Warwick end of the Hatton branch platform
Ref: gwrhj104
Anon
Light engine GWR 78xx class 4-6-0 No 7818 Granville Manor at the Warwick end of the Hatton branch platform
Ex-GWR 4-6-0 No 4096 Highclere Castle' passes through Hatton on an up express on 6th August 1962
Ref: gwrhj1877
B Moore
Ex-GWR 4-6-0 No 4096 Highclere Castle' passes through Hatton on an up express on 6th August 1962
British Railways 4-6-0 Standard Class 5MT No 73025 runs light engine off the Stratford branch onto the up line
Ref: gwrhj1891
RM Casserley
BR 4-6-0 Standard Class 5MT No 73025 runs light engine off the Stratford branch on to the up line to Warwick
A GWR Railcar tows a composite coach as it departs Hatton station's branch platform for Leamington Spa
Ref: gwrhj1895
G Adams
A GWR Railcar tows a composite coach as it departs Hatton station's branch platform for Leamington Spa
GWR 4-4-0  No 3377 coasts through Hatton station en route for Stratford on Avon with a single coach in tow
Ref: gwrhj1924
WM Whitehouse
GWR 4-4-0 No 3377 coasts through Hatton station en route for Stratford on Avon with a single coach in tow

Ex-GWR 4-6-0 No 6005 'King George II' enters the station on the 2:20pm Paddington to Birkenhead
Ref: gwrhj1925
P Kingston
Ex-GWR 4-6-0 No 6005 'King George II' enters the station on the 2:20pm Paddington to Birkenhead
British Railways built 2-6-2T 'Large Prairie' No 4176 eases off having banked the freight train from Warwick station
Ref: gwrhj1926
J Moss
British Railways built 2-6-2T 'Large Prairie' No 4176 eases off having banked the freight train from Warwick station
West Country Class 4-6-2 No 34094 'Mortehoe' passes under Station Road bridge at speed on 27th April 1963
Ref: gwrhj1884
M Morant
West Country Class 4-6-2 No 34094 'Mortehoe' passes under Station Road bridge at speed on 27th April 1963
Rebuilt WC 4-6-2 No 34098 'Templecombe' storms through Hatton on a returning FA special on 27th April 1963
Ref: gwrhj1886
M Morant
Rebuilt WC 4-6-2 No 34098 'Templecombe' storms through Hatton on a returning FA special on 27th April 1963
Ex-Southern Railway 4-6-2 No 34028 'Eddystone' passes under the bridge on a FA Cup supporters special from Birmingham
Ref: gwrhj1887
M Morant
Ex-SR 4-6-2 No 34028 'Eddystone' passes under the bridge on a FA Cup supporters special from Birmingham

Ex-GWR 56xx Class 0-6-2T No 6697 is seen passing through Hatton with a BMC car train for the south on 7th May 1965
Ref: gwrhj2373
N Kendall
Ex-GWR 0-6-2T No 6697 is seen passing through Hatton with a BMC car train for the south on 7th May 1965
Ex-GWR 4073 Class 4-6-0 No 5054 ' Earl of Ducie' is seen departing from Leamington's up platform in 1964
Ref: gwrhj2375
N Kendall
Ex-GWR 4-6-0 Hall Class No 6974 'Bryngwyn Hall' runs southbound through Hatton with an up freight
British Railways built 2-6-0 2MT No 46470 runs light engine through Hatton station on 20th April 1965
Ref: gwrhj2378
N Kendall
British Railways built 2-6-0 2MT No 46470 runs light engine through Hatton station on 20th April 1965
BR 2-10-0 Standard Class 9F No 92242 heads south at the head of an empty mineral train on 20th April 1965
Ref: gwrhj2384
N Kendall
BR 2-10-0 Standard Class 9F No 92242 heads south at the head of an empty mineral train on 20th April 1965