Station Name: HYDE ROAD

[Source: Nick Catford]


Date opened: 2.5.1892
Location: North side of Hyde Road
Company on opening: Manchester Sheffield & Lincolnshire Railway
Date closed to passengers: 7.7.1958
Date closed completely: 27.2.1965
Company on closing: British Railways (London Midland Region)
Present state: Demolished. The abandoned entrance road to the goods yard can still be identified.
County: Lancashire
OS Grid Ref: SJ892959
Date of visit: 22 March 1987 & 21 February 2009
Notes: Hyde Road was opened by the Manchester, Sheffield & Lincolnshire Railway (MSLR) on the 2nd May 1892. The station was situated on the MSLR’s Fallowfield Loop line, a 7 mile double track route that linked the Midland Railway’s Manchester South District Line from a point just to the south of Chorlton-cum-Hardy to the MSLR main line between
Manchester and Sheffield at Fairfield. The reason for the line was to give the MLSR access to Manchester Central Station from the east.

The line opened in two stages the first section opening from Chorlton to Fallowfield in September 1891. Hyde Road station was located on an embankment on the north side of Hyde Road. It had substantial brick built buildings on both sides of the line which connected down to street level. The stations northbound platforms overhanging the embankment was largely constructed out of wood. There was a large goods yard on the east side of the station comprising four sidings and a 5 ton crane but no goods shed. One of the siding was curved away from the main line, finishing at right angles to it and parallel with Hyde Road. A signalbox in the middle of the northbound platform controlled access to the goods yard with another box between the two diverging tracks a Hyde Junction, 500 yards north of the station. This was later closed with a new box controlling both the junction and the goods yard being built on the west side of the line close to the station.

The line followed and indirect route around the southern suburbs of Manchester and had difficulty competing for local commuter traffic. Passengers in the Grorton area found it quicker to use Bell Vue or Gorton & Openshaw rather than Hyde Road and passengers from Levenshulme saved time by using the LNWR station.

In 1897 the MSLR became the Great Central Railway (GCR). By this time Hyde Road was served by a local stopping service that ran between Manchester Central and Guide Bridge. In 1903 there were twenty one weekday trains in each direction and seven on a Sunday. When electric trams arrived in the early 20th century serving all intermediate stations except
Alexandra Park they were able to provide a more direct and quicker service into central Manchester which further depleted passenger numbers on the loop line. A steady stream of express services passed through the station. a few of them stopping at Fallowfield which was the most important station on the line.

At one stage, the GCR provided two bay platforms at Hyde Road so that it could act as a terminus for some Belle Vue excursion trains. They are shown on the 1905 Ordnance Survey map and were still in use in 1914 but these excursions stopped at an early date and the platforms were taken out of use. In 1923 the line became part of the LNER.

While the local passenger service on the Fallowfield loop line was in decline, goods traffic remained healthy with regular goods trains in both directions


By the 1930's the LNER had reduced the local stopping service that served Hyde Road to seven trains in each direction on a weekday with no services at all on Sundays. The line itself continued to be very busy with express services which included the Liverpool Central to Harwich Parkston Quay Boat Train. Hyde Road Station and the Fallowfield Loop Line became part of the nationalised British Railways network in 1948.

In 1954 consideration was given to electrifying the line. At this time the former MSL Main line (The Woodhead Route) between Manchester and Sheffield had been electrified and it seemed sensible to continue the electrification through to Manchester Central. As things turned out only a short section of the line, including that passing through Hyde Road, between Fairfield and
Reddish, were a new Motive Power Depot was opened, was electrified. During the 1950's and 1960's some trains changed from steam traction to electric traction and vice versa at Hyde Road. Electric traction on its way to and from the Reddish Depot passed through the station until the early 1980's.

By 1958 local stopping services which still ran between Manchester Central and Guide Bridge were down to three or four on week days only. On the 7th July 1958 the service was withdrawn and Hyde Road Station closed to passenger services. The station remained open for goods traffic until 1965 but this was also now in decline and in later years the only traffic was coal for
local merchants; the long curving siding this was used for coal wagons. Regular passenger express services continued to use the line through Hyde Road until the closure of Manchester Central in1969. By this date there was just one DMU a day from Liverpool to Guide Bridge and back. After that date it was only goods services passed through. The station buildings at Hyde Road were demolished in the late 1960's. Reddish Depot closed in 1983 and the last goods services used the line in October 1988.

However in 1987, a length of the line at this location was used for 'Project Light Rail', a three week demonstration of a modern tramway, prior to the opening of the Manchester Metrolink system. A Docklands Light Railway (London) car was fitted with a pantograph was used and a short lived temporary station Debdale Park was built at this time with a free
bus service from Manchester Piccadilly for anyone who wanted to ride on the trams. The station was adjacent to Hyde Road signalbox at the north end of the former Hyde Road station site. Power was supplied from the overhead wiring on the electrified section of line between Fairfield and Reddish Motive Power Depot, but with the voltage reduced from 1500 to 750 Volts DC.

In 2001 the route of the Fallowfield Loop line was converted into a cycleway.

Source: Great Central Railway Society journal 'Forward' No. 150 December 2006 - Hyde Road Station by Brian Wainwright. Further reading: The Fallowfield Line, EM Johnson 2000 Foxline Publishing .ISBN187011969X

Other web sites: Closed South Manchester Railways, The Hyde & Peak Railtour & Levenshulme then and now. Tickets from Michael Stewart

Click here to see other stations on the Fallowfield Loop Line:
Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Wilbraham Road, Fallowfield, Levenshulme South
& Fairfield. See also Debdale Park & Reddish Motive Power Depot


Hyde Road Station looking south in c. early 1960's. Note the goods yard to the left which remained open until 27th February 1965.





Hyde Road Station in 1964
Photo by T Brooks

Hyde & Peak Railtour passing through the site of Hyde Road Station on 13th November 1982
P
hoto by Neil Furgusson-Lee from Neil's Railway Photos web site

The site of Hyde Road Station looking north in March 1987. The Docklands Light Railway vehicle No. 11 was operating a tram demonstration run for Greater Manchester PTE as part of 'Project Light Rail'
P
hoto by Bevan Price

Click on thumbnail to enlarge


 

 

 

[Source: Nick Catford]



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