The Chapel Milton Viaduct, Bowley and Buxton Extension, Midland Railway

The Chapel Milton Viaduct, Rowley and Buxton Extension, Midland Railway . Source: Illustrated London News [Click on image to enlarge it.]

Midland Railway Works near King's-Cross

The Rowsley and Buxton Extension of the Midland Railway was brought to completion about two months since. Although this line is only about thirteen miles in length, the works have been exceedingly heavy, and have taken rather more than four years in their execution. The Rowsley and Buxton line completes the communication of the system of the Midland Railway with Manchester. It commences by a junction from the Rowsley and Buxton Railway (a description of which we gave in the Number of this Journal for June 13, 1863), the junction being about three miles south of Buxton. It thence posses up the Great Rocks Dale and across the Peak district of Derbyshire, by Chapel-en-le-Frith, to New Mills, where it joins the Manchester, Sheffield, and Lincolnshire branch to Manchester. The heaviest work on the line is the “Dove Holes Tunnel,” which is nearly a mile and three quarters in length. This tunnel was executed from nine shafts, the deepest of which was 123 yards deep. The work was one of considerable difficulty, owing to this great depth from the surface and the very large amount of water encountered. There are many other works of great magnitude on the line; but the next in importance to the tunnel is the Chapel Milton viaduct, a view of which we have selected for one of our Engravings. This viaduct crosses the valley between Chapel-en-le-Frith and Chinley. It consists of fifteen semicircular arches, of 42 ft. span each; and the extreme height from the river to the rails is about 100 ft. Several of the piers near the centre had to be carried down a depth of about 50 ft. from the surface of the ground to ensure a sufficient foundation. The entire viaduct (except a small portion of the arches) is built of Bandstone, and the work is a very Handsome and well-proportioned structure.

The railway would have been opened for traffic about three months sooner, but for a very extensive landslip, which happened on the line at Bugsworth, in consequence of whicn a slight diversion had to be made in the course of the line, entailing some additional heavy works. These works were executed, however, with very great rapidity, and the line was opened for public traffic. The engineer in chief was Mr. W. H. Barlow, and the resident engineer, Mr. F. Campion, afterwards succeeded by Mr. A. Langley. The contractor for tne first portion of the line was Mr. J. Ashwoll, and for the remainder (except the large tunnel) Messrs. Eckersley and Bayliss.

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“The Chapel Milton Viaduct, Rowley and Buxton Extension, Midland Railway 50 (23 March 1867): 280, 288. Hathi Trust Digital Library version of a copy in the University of Michigan Library. Web. 9 December 2015.

Last modified 15 December 2015