Station Name: BUCKLEY 1st Station

[Source: Paul Wright]


Date opened: 1.5.1866
Location: South side of Drury Lane
Company on opening: Wrexham, Mold and Connah’s Quay Railway
Date closed to passengers: February 1895
Date closed completely: Wrexham, Mold and Connah’s Quay Railway
Company on closing: 5.7.1965
Present state: Platform extant.
County: Flintshire
OS Grid Ref: SJ290644
Date of visit: 6.2.2011

Notes: Buckley Station was the northern terminus of the Wrexham, Mold & Connah’s Quay Railway (WM&CQR) which linked Wrexham & Buckley and which opened for goods services on the 1st of January 1866 and for passenger services on the 1st of May 1866. The line made an end on connection with the Buckley Railway a short distance to the north of Buckley Station which provided a through route to Connah’s Quay on the River Dee. One of the primary objectives of the WM&CQR was to provide a means of taking coal and other products northwards towards the coast for onward shipment.

Buckley Station opened with the line. It was located on the south side of a road overbridge which carried Drury Lane over the line. The station had one platform that was located on the east side of the line. A roadway led up from the northern end of the platform to Drury Lane. At the northern end of the platform there was a single storey brick built building that
housed all of the stations passenger facilities. The station had a run around loop and to the south there goods sidings. A small engine shed was also provided.

At the time of opening the Buckley station had four trains to Wrexham on weekdays and four return workings. The first departure was at 7.30 am and the last train arrived from Wrexham at 7.30 pm. The journey to Wrexham took forty minutes. By 1878 the service to Wrexham had increased to five trains.

Regular passenger trains did not operate northwards from Buckley. Originally it had been the intention that they would but the Buckley Railway was not suitable for regular passenger services as it was lightly laid and had torturous gradients. It is known during the early years of the WM&CQR the occasional excursions did operate over it. It was however an important goods line. On the 30th of June 1873 the Buckley Railway was vested into the WM&CQR. 

On the 1st of November 1887 the Wrexham trains were extended at the southern end of the line to run into a new station called Wrexham Central. The new WM&CQR station was right in the centre of the town and therefore very convenient for passengers. The original WM&CQR station became Wrexham Exchange. At this time Buckley had six weekday departures for Wrexham Central.

On the 31st of March 1890 two new sections of line opened that brought about the demise of Buckley Station. The lines created a through route between Wrexham and Chester and they had come about because the WM&CQR had entered into a partnership with the Manchester, Sheffield & Lincolnshire Railway (MS&LR). The WM&CQR built a new line from Buckley Junction, which was just over half a mile to the south of Buckley Station, to Connahs Quay and Shotton via Hawarden. The line was known as the Hawarden Loop and work had started on it on the 6th of September 1887. The MS&LR built a line from Chester to Connahs Quay & Shotton thereby creating the through route. The WM&CQR and the MS&LR were thus able to compete with the Great Western Railway (GWR) who had had a line between the two centres since 1846. Effectively Buckley Station was left at the end of a short branch cut off from what became the main line. The WM&CQR closed the station to passenger services on 31st of March 1890. Passengers were encouraged to use Buckley Junction instead.

The new station at was not as convenient for Buckley as the old one had been which led to many complaints.

Eventually the WM&CQR was persuaded to re-open Buckley station, which was being referred to as Buckley ‘Old’. A passenger service was re-introduced on the 1st of June 1893. In order to re-open the station the WM&CQR had to satisfy the board of trade that it was up to modern standards. The company had to carry alterations which included the creation of a separate ladies waiting room, the provision of an outside clock and changes to the signalling arrangements. The re-introduced service was not a success and it was withdrawn completely in February 1895 after which Buckley Old became a goods station only.

A few months after the station closed to passenger services authority was given to build a 1-road shed at the Old Buckley station site. It was to be located south of the station on the west side of the line to Buckley Junction. The WM&CQR allocated £750.00 for its construction. The new shed opened in 1896 but it was closed by June 1919.

On the 1st of January 1905 Buckley Old became part of the Great Central Railway (GCR) who took over the WM&CQR as it had been bankrupted by a number of schemes that the GCR (The MS&LR changed its name to the GCR on the 1st of August 1897) had involved it in.

The station continued to serve as a goods station passing from the GCR to the London & North Eastern Railway on the 1st of January 1923 and then to the nationalised British Railways (London Midland Region) on the 1st of


Coal train passing through Buckley station
January 1948. The last goods services ran northwards to Connahs Quay via the former Buckley Railway around about 1960 after which the line was cut back to Northop Hall. Two goods services per day continued to operate through Buckley Old station on weekdays running between Northop Hall and Croes Newydd until the 10th of September 1962 after which the service was reduced to one per weekday. The line through the station closed completely on the 5th of July 1965 and was lifted shortly afterwards. The station building was demolished but the platform could still be seen in February 2011.

See The Buckley Railway

Sources:

Ticket from Michael Stewart, route map drawn by Alan Young, Bradshaw from Chris Totty.

To see other stations on the Wrexham Central to Bidston Line click

Wrexham Central, Wrexham Exchange, Rhosddu, Hope High Level, Chester Golf Club Halt, Birkenhead Junction Golf Club Platform, Sealand Rifle Range Halt, Burton Point, Storeton,

See also
Liscard & Poulton, Seacombe

See also MS&LR Stations between Shotton and Chester Northgate
Chester Junction Golf Club Platform, Sealand, Saughall, Blacon, Chester Liverpool Road, Chester Northgate

See also related items

The Buckley Railway
Hawarden Loop
Hawarden Bridge

Railways at Bidston


Despite being closed to passengers for 53 years, Buckley station was still standing in 1948. It had been in use as a goods station since its closure to passenger services in 1895. The line leading away northwards into the distance connected to the Buckley Railway which gave access to Connah's Quay
P
hoto from John Mann collection


1881 1:10,000 OS Map


1875 1:2,500 OS Map


1898 1:2,500 OS Map. By this time the station had closed to passengers but remained in use as a goods station. A 1-road engine shed (between the tracks at the bottom), opened
in 1896 and closed in 1917.

An ex LNER tank engine hauls a mixed goods train through Buckley Old station in the 1950s. The station building and platform can be seen to the right of the train. 68595 is a GER loco, designed by James Holden and built between 1890 and 1901. Formerly GER class R24, it was reclassified at the 1923 grouping J67/1 by the LNER. The last J67 was withdrawn in 1958.

The site of Buckley first station in 1966 just after the track had been lifted. The overgrown platform can be seen to the right of the picture. Taken from a similar viewpoint to the 1948 picture above.

Looking north from the north end of Buckley Station in 1966. The line was in the process of being lifted having closed in 1965.

The surviving platform at Buckley station looking south along the track bed towards Wrexham in February 2011.
Photo by Paul Wright

looking north from the north end of Buckley station towards Connahs Quay in February 2011. The WM&CQR continued under the bridge and ran for a short distance to where it made an end on connection with the Buckley Railway. Passenger services did not operate north from Buckley station.
P
hoto by Paul Wright


Last updated: Sunday, 04-Jun-2017 09:05:58 BST
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