Harborne Station was the terminus of the Harborne Railway
and opened to passengers on 10th August 1874. Harborne Station had a single
platform which unlike the other stations on the line was positioned on the left
of a New Street to Harborne train. In addition to the station there were
sidings primarily for coal traffic, fixed crane, weigh bridge and a goods shed.
Whilst Monument Lane was the nearest shed, the majority of services were
serviced by locomotives from Aston and Walsall sheds, the latter reflecting in
part that a few services from Harborne to New Street ran on to Walsall. A
second platform was said to have been constructed in 1901 alongside the
run-round loop, but was rarely if ever used and was removed by 1911 to be
replaced by carriage sidings. Until 1947 the station was able to boast of an
engine turntable which was replaced by a sand wharf built on its site. For more
information on Harborne station please see Steven Robertson's article on the
Harborne Railway in LMS Journal No 3 published by Wild Swan.
Subsequent to the above, my query as to whether a second
platform existed I received the following response from Reg Instone of
the LNWR Society. Reg
writes 'I can state that there quite definitely were two platforms before 1911,
although the installation of the second one in 1901 is a myth. They existed
before 1886 and may well have been original from 1874.
The evidence is as follows (in chronological
1886 O.S. 25" map - clearly shown
LNWR plan 61275 dated 10
February 1900 - this is for the abolition of the Signal Box and replacement by
a ground frame (not carried out) but shows both platforms as existing
O.S. 25" map - clearly shown (see LMS Journal No 3 page 54).
survey, undated but mentions corrs. of 1902 - clearly shown.
PTC minute 9810
of Feb 1908, Harborne, "... removing the up platform and laying down an
additional siding ..."
LNWR plan 10994 dated 20th August.1908 for new
footbridge - clearly shown second platform "(disused)" (Birmingham Local
studies Department, Railway Plan 32/7)
PW Committee minutes 39105/6 of Aug
1908 - Harborne, contracts let
PW Committee minute 39222 of Nov 1908
Harborne, "alterations at passenger station are almost complete" (regret I do
not presently have a precise completion date for this work)
Siding diagram 873 dated 1.1910 - clearly shown (RAIL410/991) - may not be
Referring to the map caption on page 54 of LMS Journal No
3, Frank Ernest Westwood was one of two porters at Harborne from 31st January
1910 until after 1911 (RAIL410/1704 page 221), so should have remembered the
second platform if it was removed in 1911. Possibly his lack of memory suggests
that it was disused by the time he arrived, or was it actually removed in 1908?
He was born 14th May 1890 and entered LNWR Service on 11th September 1905 so it
was not his first post, but was still only 19 when he came there.
Steven Robertson wrote a postscript in LMS Journal No
7 to his article where he revealed his discovery of a minute of the LMS'
Traffic Committee dated June 1947. The turntable was to be sent to Llandovery
where the installation will be dealt with as an LMS/GWR Joint line matter. The
minute showed the £1024 costs of removal was offset to a great extent by
the payment of £921 meaning its removal only cost the LMS £73 in
total. In 1908 a footbridge was constructed which provided both a "through"
route as well as access to the station for the newly constructed development of
Harborne Estates the footpath still being in use today but ending in Frensham
Way near the site of the old turntable.
Select an image below to view the larger version with