train crash 1964

Post any pictures of your time at CH, or pictures of people/places at CH now - what's changed over the past years? What's good/what's bad?

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Post by UserRemovedAccount »

Ah, the memories come flooding back! The picture of the crash site at the start of the thread reminds me that the Itchingfield Junction saw the main line go off to the right (facing southwards) and a minor line headed off to the left, past the 1st XV rugger pitch; I think that it was NOT electrified.
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Post by Great Plum »

Not the branch lines were not electrified...
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CH Train crash

Post by richardibriggs »

:oops: Seems my first time on and I'm a couple of years later than everyone else.
I remember the train crash well, I was in Peel A and we were all woken by an almighty flash and a bang. I am sure it was a collision between two goods trains. One travelling the Guildford to Brighton Line, the other on the London to Portsmouth line that ran via Arundel in West Sussex. Unfortunately there were fatalaties of the crew on one train.
An earlier comment refered to the Brighton line not being electrified. True only steam trains and then later deisels used it.
This sticks in my mind as I was put onto a steam train on that line at the end of my first term in December 1960. I protested to my house master at the time that this train was the wrong one only to be cuffed across the top the head and told not to be so impudent. Needless to say I ended up in Brighton, lost and with no money. My anxious mother was waiting for me at Arundel station and when I didnt show up she phoned the school. She was curtly informed by my house master that I wouldn't be lost for long someone was bound to find a ten year old boy wandering around Brighton in such a distinctive uniform. Needless to say I survived!
PS My trunk did get the correct train.
My other abiding memory of the Brighton line was that just below Itchingfield junction we used to put "Housey" buttons on the line and when they had been flattened by a passing train we could use them in vending machines at Horsham station.
Someone mentioned that a film was made in 65 using CH station as a set. The film was a Boulting Brothers production "Rotten to the Core" a comedy starring Dudley Sutton.
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Re: train crash 1964

Post by Beowulf »

I don't recall the exact date of this incident but I do remember it quite vividly. I was in the third form at the time, I suppose, and in Peele A. Many of us woke up during the night and saw/heard the crash lighting up the darkness. In the morning, we could see the wreckage quite clearly. There was a huge pile up of railway trucks next to (and just south of) the bridge (on the road that runs past Shelley Wood towards Itchingfield). The pile, as I recall, was about 30' tall. I don't think I'm exaggerating. There was wreckage all the way from the bridge to the junction as was, just south of the level crossing by what was Peele A's rugby field and just by a little copse whose name I've forgotten.

Needless to say we were expressly forbidden to go anywhere near the crash site. I'm fairly sure that passenger service had already ended by the time of the crash, but of course the line was still open for freight. Both of the crew of the northbound train coming up from the Brighton direction (we called it the Brighton Line in those days) were killed. The crew of the southbound "Pompey" train survived I believe as its locomotive had already passed the junction when the collision occurred.

In those days, Christs Hospital station was quite a busy place as it was the junction for three lines: the main (Porstmouth) line, and the branch lines to Guildford and Brighton. It was also about this time that a scene from Rotten to the Core was filmed at the station with Anton Rogers and, as I recall, Victor Maddern. If you ever see the film, we Housey boys are quite clearly visible in the crowd.
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Re: train crash 1964

Post by Great Plum »

This is going to make me sound geeky, but passenger service on the Stenying Line survived until 1966...
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Re: train crash 1964

Post by wurzel »

The branch railway looping round bigside and under the bridge by the Bax Castle ran to southwater where in the 80's the station platform still existed under the bridge so you could change before popping into the Maceline for bottle of "pop". The other line left the main line the other side of CH station and went to guildford via Slinfold and cranleigh - the cutting from CH towards Slinfold (past the private airfield and riding stables) was used as landfill by HBC / WSCC. At Slinfold (where i lived) it ran along behind a pig farm who encroached upon it and then there was a demolished bridge across Hayes lane before the disused track ran past the DrBecks/BASF coating&Inks factory, then the station (now a house at entrance to caravan park that uses the station carpark/tracks), then the Gravity Randalls / Youngmans Ladder works before going into a tunnel under A29 stane Street and off towards Rudgwick.

Not a train spotter just grew up local to CH and used to do primary school sponsored walks and Cub wildlife walks down the disused line
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Post by sejintenej »

Great Plum wrote:I had heard about the Bluebell railway clearing a cutting - I believe the Slinfold line (closed in 1965 anoraks!) did have a cutting like that... and still does...

The Guildford to Cranleigh line in the early 90's was looked at reopening...
? By Slinfold do you mean the line to Guildford? If so that was closed to passenger traffic in the mid 1950's. My journey home involved changing trains at Guildford, Reading and South Brent from the age of 9. With the closure, at the age of about 13 I had to cross London by myself to get to Paddington - very confusing and then all those platforms at Paddington. At least there wasn't a Platform 13 1/3 or whatever. Then they closed the South Brent line ........
Complicated? well, of those brought up in the village only Mr Favis had ever been more than 15 miles away - because he was a Navy stoker in WWI; I was the second. Trains were strange animals ending up 16 miles away (remember we couldn't get TV and there was 1 bus a week so we didn't know what they was).
Laughing at your own mistakes may lengthen your life. Laughing at your wife’s mistakes will surely shorten it.
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Re: train crash 1964

Post by DavidRawlins »

I used to travel on the Brighton line, going home. The rolling stock was old. On one occassion we were put in a first class compartment that was a sitting room, with comfortable arm chairs that were not fixed, so could be moved around. Would have been useful for a conference; we just enjoyed it, especially as we were homeward bound.
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Re: CH model railway

Post by jhclausen »

When I was a pupil in the early 1990s the model railway was run by Mr Hudson. I cannot remember what subject he taught but I think he was a house tutor in Leigh Hunt? Is the layout still the same now? The steep hill at one end of the railway caused problems for many of the locomotives. They had to have extra weights put in so they could drag the train up the hill!
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Post by Jabod2 »

Moulam wrote: Mon Nov 21, 2005 8:19 pm this is a normal 00 gauge railway. the one built by the head of the manual school is in a local school. i can not remember the name of this school but i will find out for you tomorrow. i have riddden on said railway 2 times now as i have gone, as a community service co-ordinater, to help out at their fetes etc. at which the trains are always running. I was a pupil of Keith Stratton's when he was building it, and visted the school as part of CH's local PR contributions.
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