Railway Warehouse built for the Great Northern Railway at their Friar Gate Station 1877-78 by Kirk & Randall of Sleaford. Red brick and Welsh slate and glazed roofs with three brick stacks to east. Unusual plan of rectangular warehouse with triangular office block with a mezzanine floor to the east. Two and three storeys, over a basement. Double chamfered plinth, moulded corbelled eaves cornice. South elevation of twenty-one bays divided into groups of three by giant pilaster strips. The centre bay has a segmental arched entrance, otherwise the ground floor has segment headed windows with metal casements. Similar windows above except for two bays with double doors and two bays with bracketed out timber hoist structures under oversailing gables, one partly demolished. West elevation of 1-4-1 bays with mostly segment headed windows and a large tripartite railway entrance under riveted box girder. Bays one and five step forward. North elevation is similar to the south, but of 27 bays. The east end forms part of the offices and has three storeys with six segment headed sashes to each floor. Rounded corner to acute north east angle with tripartite arrangement of sashes to each floor. South east elevation of 2-2-5-2-2 bays. The outer pairs have two segment headed windows to three floors. The centre five bays have 1 similar windows above a large opening under a riveted box girder. The office block with rounded acute angle was built to front onto the proposed approach road from Friary Street to Friar Gate [...]
Draycott Colliery probably closed in the 1940′s. A 1949 Ordnance Survey map shows the line back to the north portal of the tunnel and the exchange siding are still in place but the half mile of track into the colliery has been removed. Foxfield Colliery was the last survivor, finally closing in 1965. At that time Europa’s strategy was to create a balanced mining finance group with the three coal mining businesses generating the cash to fund their precious metals exploration activities centred in Western Europe and the US. Europa’s interests included a joint venture with Hecla Mining, exploring for gold in Montana; a platinum prospect in Bavaria; a joint venture exploration for gold in Alburquerque, Spain; and a gold concession at the mouth of the Pra River in Ghana. Europa also has a 22.7 per cent stake in Dana Exploration, an Irish exploration group, which has interests in Ireland, Ghana and Botswana. Europa’s faith in Draycott Cross was, however, short lived. The colliery closed early in 1991 and the land in the vicinity of the colliery was sold and the adits were sealed. In the summer of 1991, a few months after closure the railway tunnel was still accessible but it has subsequently been sealed and no further access is possible. There is no external evidence of the mine but when visited in 1991 although in the tunnel some sections of the narrow gauge track were still in place together with the cable haulage system and two upturned tubs. Beyond the adits the abandoned tunnel [...]
The sidings at Oakamoor are a relatively recent addition to the line’s history, and were first used as a siding to the quarry nearby. The sidings are currently used for storage as part of the Churnet Valley preserved Railway. When the line was first opened in 1849 there were no sidings at Oakamoor. The line originally ran between North Rode and Uttoxeter, primarily for heavy freight in and around the numerous limestone quarries and copper works dotted around the area. Further along the track is Oakamoor Tunnel which is 497 yards long, I didnt get to that part this time but will be heading back soon. Finally closed in 1964.