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ask a question: I will, providing I know, answer the questions on the Guestbook and if you fill-in
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|Number of entries displayed on this page: 4|
|Location: Stirchley, Birmingham|
This website is fantastic. Seeing the pictures of what should still be Hazelwell station started a trail of thinking for me. That whole line should not be used for Freight. They should bring back passenger services. :(
Great site :-D
Quite agree Craig - a review of the Camp Hill line has been undertaken and a further preliminary feasibility study is currently being conducted in relation to reopening the line, and several of its stations, for passenger traffic: may all come to nothing, but fingers crossed!
|Name: Patrick Prinn|
|Location: NSW Australia|
I have enjoyed RAB for many months now and I am visiting West Midlands in September this year to see my relatives.As a kid in the forties I was an avid Train spotter of GWR & LMS locomotives and I am going to see steam locos at Severn Valley Railway and Tyseley. Once again your Website is fantastic, keep up the good work. Regards Patrick Prinn
|Name: Mike Adler|
very interesting and useful. I'll be back for further looks from time to time
|Name: Andy Harvey|
Olton station platform buildings are a shadow of what they were in the 60s/early 70s. Imagine Tyseley Station as an example, but on a much higher elevation, as Olton is.
In those days however, the station was nothing like as integrated into the streetscape as it now clearly is. Passengers had to approach the station down two narrow, untarmaced paths from Ulverley Green Road or Richmond Road. The chain fencing along both paths was badly maintained and the undergrowth of gorse intruded into the pathways in the summer. In winter, rain made the paths very muddy. There must have been a vehicular access to the station using the road that now runs to the station car park opposite the entranceway, but it too must have been unsurfaced. This access would not have invited too many cars down it.
As your photos show, instead of the two narrow paths, a wide public highway now runs past the station and a significant number of bus routes serve the station, including the 37 bus between Birmingham and Solihull. Why anyone would take this bus from Olton to Birmingham is a mystery to me. It takes a minimum of 30 minutes and much longer in the rush hour. The fastest train to Birmingham takes 11 minutes - maybe less. Going to Solihull, the 37 bus, dropping you off in the centre, may be a better option, as Solihull Station is a good way out of the centre, even with the new shopping centre that has moved the retail area more in the direction of the station.
Olton Station is an old friend. It took me to school, it took me to work and now it takes me out on the town on my occasional trips back to England. Overall, the changes have been for the better. It's a shame the canopies had to go, as weather protection is not the best on such an exposed location, but they were a pig to maintain, I'll bet. Olton seems to have lost its direct connection to Marylebone - the occasional Chiltern Railways train would stop there - but it's not a great inconvenience to hop on a feeder train for one stop to Solihull and thence to London. The greatest boon is the connection to the Stourbridge/Worcester/Great Malvern/Hereford line via Snow Hill. This happened about 10 years ago. It's now possible to get to Wolverhampton (or less likely Coventry), without havng to go through New Street, by changing at the striking Smethwick Galton Bridge station. Of course, it's also possible to jump on the Metro at Snow Hill or the Jewellery Quarter, bring West Bromwich and Wolverhampton into range.
Thanks for kicking-off the guestbook with your recollections!