STAINES WEST - WEST DRAYTON

 


 

Single line 6 miles

Opened 9.8.1884 West Drayton - Colnbrook; 2.11.1885 Colnbrook - Staines West.
Closed to passengers - 29.3.1965
Closed to goods - 27.1.1981 Colnbrook - Staines West New Spur Jn.


Stations
- West Drayton 2nd (opened 1884) r/n 1895 West Drayton & Yiewesley r/n 1974 West Drayton; West Drayton 1st (opened 1838, closed 1884)
-
Colnbrook Estate Halt (opened 1961, closed 1965)
-
Colnbrook (opened 1954)
-
Poyle Estate Halt (opened 1954)
-
Poyle Halt for Stanwell Moor (opened 1927)
- Runnymede Range Halt (opened 1887) r/n 1934 Runymede Halt r/n 1935 Yeoveny Halt (closed 1962)
- Staines r/n 1949
Staines West.

Motive Power Depots - Staines one-track sub-shed to Southall 81C (closed 1952)


History
The town of Staines, 19 miles SW of central London, was in Middlesex until 1974 but is now in Surrey close to the Gtr London boundary. Independently promoted the Staines & West Drayton Railway (S&WDR) it reached Staines in 1885 and was absorbed by the GWR in 1900. The original plans had envisaged linking it into the Windsor lines on Staines Moor but the L&SWR would not agree so it was carried over its lines to terminate alongside Pound Mill in Moor Lane. Because finances were tight the struggling S&WDR bought a mill owner's house adjacent to the site and altered it to serve as a station. In 1964 the Western Region provided 14 trains on weekdays the journey with four stops taking 17 mins; the following year the service was withdrawn.

After closure to passengers the goods yard at Staines West was demolished and a rail accessed oil storage depot built in its place. When the line was severed by the building of the M25 in 1981, a new connection with the Southern Region line was made to serve the oil depot but ten years later it closed. The three miles between West Drayton and Colnbrook remain open as a means of getting stone, steel and construction materials to Heathrow Airport for the terminal 5 project due for completion in 2008.


Route - when open
The bay platform at the west end of West Drayton station (GR061801) was used by both Uxbridge and Staines branch trains with both branches diverging NW from the Paddington - Reading line immediately west of the station. The two branches then parted company after a short distance with this line turning south to pass under the main line and bridge the River Colne. From there it headed SW passing under the later M4, the A4 at Colnbrook Estate Halt and at Colnbrook over Bath Road by means of a level crossing. Poyle for Stanwell Moor Halt was located on the south side of the Horton Road overbridge and for the next two miles it ran south alongside the Wraysbury River. It then climbed away from Yeoveney, bridged the L&SW Windsor branch, passed under the Staines Bypass (A30) and ended at Staines West station (GR032718) near the junction of Wraysbury Road and Moor Lane.


Route - today
The operational part of the branch currently ends at the site of Colnbrook station (GR036767) in Bath Road and since April 2004 rails across the Bath Road have disappeared under a thick layer of tar. From there it is walkable south to Horton Road where, in 2003, there was a work site for an M25 spur. The trackbed continues on the opposite side of Horton Road and ends abruptly at the M25. The motorway has been built over the formation for the next mile but a pedestrian underpass under J14 gives access to a tarmac bridleway that runs alongside it. The trackbed resumes after a about a mile but stops at the dismantled bridge over the existing LSWR line. A pedestrian crossing over the line slightly further west leads to Moor Lane which leads to Staines West station. Overgrown tracks that served the oil depot at Staines are still in place.


Relics
-
West Drayton station (2nd) - still open (Paddington - Reading line)
- West Drayton station (1st) - demolished: no trace
-
Colnbrook Estate Halt - no trace
-
Colnbrook platforms and main station buildings removed but S.M.s house alongside the level crossing survives
-
Poyle Estate Halt - no trace
-
Poyle Halt for Stanwell Moor - built over by J14 of M25
- Yeoveney - Wooden entrance gate and concrete supports remain.
-
Staines West station building intact listed grade ll, a section of platform track and buffer stop remain, platform area now a car park.

Bridges - all bridges in place West Drayton - Colnbrook
bridge over stream south of Colnbrook station in place
bridge over stream north of Horton Road in place but heavily overgrown
Lintel's bridge carrying Horton Road at Poyle Halt for Stanwell Moor demolished and built over by J14 of M25
bridge over Windsor Branch at Staines - bridge removed but both abutments remain
brick-arched bridge over Wraysbury River in Staines demolished
underpass under A30 in Staines survives with impenetrable undergrowth on north side
cattle bridge over line south of A30 in place.
Loco sheds - Staines (GR033720) on west side of line at north end of Staines West station demolished 1955, site now a timber yard.

(The above text courtesy of Ralph Rawlinson   ©2005.)



 

South of Junction 14 on the M25 the trackbed can be accessed again and leads northwards to Horton Road. This bridge over the Wraysbury River is north of the M25 junction.

(photo: Aug 2006)

 

 

 

Southward view of the above bridge.

(photo: Aug 2006)

 

 

 

Showing how overgrown old trackbeds can become; this is actually one of the more passable sections!

This is approximately where Poyle Estate Halt was located.

(photo: Aug 2006)

 

 

 

Another bridge further north, in the process of decaying.

(photo: Aug 2006)

 

 

 

 

 

 

If following the route northwards on foot, you will eventually emerge here, on Bath Road. The line is fenced off here but escape from it seems possible on the left just before reaching this point.

When this photo was taken, the level crossing warning sign was no longer in use but had been cheekily customised by the enterprising car dealers who occupied the land adjacent to the railway line. The car dealers are no longer there but the level crossing sign remained, as of Aug 2015, as seen on this Google StreetView.

(photo: Dec 2002)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Turning 90° right, from the photo above, there is the station site at Colnbrook, looking north from Bath Road. The station masters house is on the left. The platforms and main station building have obviously been removed but from here to West Drayton the line is still used for industrial traffic. The brick structure blocking the route of the left hand track into the road, is almost certainly the base of the signal box that used to stand there.

The tracks embedded in the road have since been buried under a layer of tarmac.

(photo: Dec 2002)

 

 

 

 

 

 

(photo: Dec 2002)

 

 

 

Colnbrook station site. In the years between this and the above photos, it has lost the track that used to pass over Bath Road.

(photo: Mar 2015)

 

 

 

Zooming into the photo above this one, a small section of the platform and ramp still remains.

(photo: Mar 2015)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Further north (toward West Drayton) and the section that remains open for freight traffic. This is the view from the Colnbrook Bypass, where the now demolished Colnbrook Estate Halt was situated.

(photo: Dec 2002)

 

 

 


Approaching the bridge over Fray's River.

(photo: 2006)

 

 

 

 

 

 

The bridge over Fray's River carrying the line toward West Drayton station. The photo was taken from the area where the Uxbridge Vine St line branched off and ran next to the river (see next page for that line and for West Drayton pics). This view is looking south.

(photo: Mar 2005)

 

 

 

The level crossing on the old coal depot approach road, just off Tavistock Road. This view is looking west - the main line from Paddington runs to the left of the road. The branch line here split just slightly further on: the line to Uxbridge Vine Street carried on in a northerly direction, the Staines branch looped back toward, and underneath, the Paddington main line on its southerly journey to Staines.

The area enclosed between the road and the track is now the site of aggregates distribution and container storage. If Crossrail ever gets built, the site will be utilised as a train stabling facility.

(photo: 2006)

 

 

 

Looking eastward toward West Drayton station. This level crossing is now manned around the clock to prevent pedestrian access to the main line to Paddington (100 yards from the photographer's position). Apparently the local kids were playing 'chicken' with the trains on the main line and the Heath & Safety Executive threatened to close and fence off the access road if steps weren't taken to prevent their access to the line.

(photo: 2006)


 


 

West Drayton - Uxbridge Vine Street.