Thursday, November 30, 2006

VERDICT: Battery Road, Lydd AOC 2005

The driver of the car that killed a train driver in a 2005 collision has received 150 hours community service.

Richard Isted, from New Romney, was reported not seeing the flashing lights at Battery Road, Lydd AOC on the Romney, Hyde and Dymchurch minature railway. The train collided with with the car on the crossing and derailed, killing the driver Suzanne Martin.

Barriers are in the process of being installed on all level crossings on this private railway.

BBC News:

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

INQUEST: Black Horse Drove

An open verdict was returned at the inquest into the death of David Muffet, the tractor driver killed in a collision at Black Horse Drove UWC, Cambridgeshire in 2005.

CEN News:

INCIDENT: Bamber Bridge MCB

A bus struck the raising barrier at Bamber Bridge crossing, halting trains for about an hour.

Preston Today:

ABUSE: Oulton Broad, Lowestoft

A driverwho twice ignored the lights and falling barriers at Oulton Broad crossing faces the possibility of a custodial sentence after being found guilty of dangerous driving.

David O'Leary overtook vehicles that had already stopped before crossing against the lights on two seperate occasions.


UPDATE: Frinton

Protesters against the removal of the manual gates at Frinton demonstrated outside a private meeting between Frinton Town Council and Network Rail.

According to press reports, there was 'civilised booing'. But no-one seems to have chained themselves to the gates. Yet.

Photo - John Tilley


ABUSE: Brickfields FC, Worcester

Brickfields footpath crossing near Worcester has been described by Network Rail asone of the most abused crossing in the West Country area. 35 incidents were reported by drivers in the last year, 18 being linked to tresspass or vandalism. Incidents of children playing 'chicken' with oncoming trains have also been recorded.

Network Rail have deployed operational staff, dubbed 'human scarecrows' to patrol the crossing area during the school half-term holidays.

Photo: Martin Humby, Worcester News

Worcester News:
Network Rail:


Network Rail have highlighted Langley Green crossing as the most abused in the Midlands/North West/North London area. They have noted 14 incidents of mis-use since January 2005. Reports indicate motorists speeding up to avoid the crossing closure and pedestrians jumping the barriers to cross the line.

Local councillor Martin Prestidge claims that the CCTV control of the crossing contributes to the abuse as the barriers can be closed for up to half an hour at a time.

Photo - Andrew Doherty,

Express and Star:
Network Rail:

Comment - Closed for half and hour at a time? I'll have to look into that. And as Birmingham's not too far away, I might pop over for a site visit sometime in the New Year.

ABUSE: Wigginton Road AHB, York

Network Rail have begun a campaign to reduce zig-zagging at the Wiggington Road AHB near York.

Tailbacks on the busy road have led some motorists to jump the lights with only seconds to spare before high speed trains pass over the crossing.

Photo: Chris Arundel,

York Press:
York Press:

Monday, November 27, 2006


Network Rail have announced that resurfacing improvements are to be made to the MCB CCTV crossing at Spring Bank in Hull.

They mention the benefits to motorists and rail users of a crossing less prone to failure due to short circuits caused by poor weather.

Cyclists have long argued for better surfacing at the crossing. Several cyclists have been seriously hurt due to falling on the crossing. Some have blamed the layout of the crossing, which is at a thirty degree angle to the road and can result in cycle tyres catching or slipping on the rails.

Legal action against Network Rail and Hull City Council has been launched in the past by cyclists seeking compensation for accidents occuring on the crossing.

Photo -

Network Rail:
BBC News (2005):
BBC News(2004) :
The Bike Zone:


The station crossing at Hayle in Cornwall has been closed to non-station users.

Network Rail claim that there have been 14 incidents of 'serious misuse' since 2005, including groups of children, vandalism of the minature warning lights and motorbikes being ridden over the crossing.

The crossing remains open to station users as a means of crossing between platforms.

Local councillor John Bennett is unhappy at the lack of consulation over the closure.

Photo - Sam at Wayfarer Photos:

Network Rail:
Councillor John Bennet:


Network Rail have announced plans to improve the track and signalling in the Lincoln area. Part of the plan is for the High Street MCB, currently operated from the adjacent signal box, to be controlled by CCTV from a new signalling centre at West Holmes.

The crossing, which has been known to fail, is a busy city centre crossing close to the railway station.

Photo - Wikimedia Commons

Network Rail:
Lincoln Today:

Comment - This will be interesting. I visit Lincoln several times a year; this is a very busy crossing for both pedestrians and road traffic. I can't wait to see how the diversions are managed when the crossing has to be closed.

Also, the crossing keeper has a good all-round view at the moment, able to see vehicles and pedestrians well in advance of the crossing. How will CCTV control impact on closure times? We'll just have to wait and see...

Thursday, November 16, 2006

DISRUPTION: Beddingham AHB 15/11/06

It would seem that the bridge that will take the A27 over the Lewes - Eastbourne line at Beddingham can't come soon enough. It has been reported that descending barriers hit a lorry, causing lengthy delays to road traffic at the crossing.

Lewes Today:

Monday, November 13, 2006

ABUSE: Wareham FC+ MWL

Near misses at a problem crossing have led to calls for increased police patrols in the area. The footpath crossing, formerly a road crossing, has a history of abuse.

RSSB research has shown Wareham as having the most near misses of any pedestrian-only crossing on the network.

Dorset Daily Echo:
RSSB report (see Appendix 4):