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Mine Exploration Forum

Author 200 Year Old Wooden Waggonway Uncovered!
Jimbo

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Joined: 30/03/2007
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200 Year Old Wooden Waggonway Uncovered!
Posted: 27/07/2016 14:08:41
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http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2379064/Wooden-railway-built-200-years-ago-discovered-near-colliery.html

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IP: 213.205.253.134 Edited: 27/07/2016 14:09:36 by Jimbo
rufenig

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200 Year Old Wooden Waggonway Uncovered!
Posted: 27/07/2016 15:02:55
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Interesting.
But what a nightmare for conservationists.
Do you leave it for people to see and watch it fall apart as it dries out.
Do you re-bury it to preserve it (if future development permits.)
Do you lift and conserve it in a museum? (expensive)

I would not like to have to decide.
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Pinzgauer

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Location: North Britain.

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200 Year Old Wooden Waggonway Uncovered!
Posted: 27/07/2016 15:19:51
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Track circuiting could have been a problem - or was it just one horse in steam ?? Mmmmm.Wink

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royfellows

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Joined: 13/06/2007
Location: Great Wyrley near Walsall

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200 Year Old Wooden Waggonway Uncovered!
Posted: 27/07/2016 15:40:24
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rufenig wrote:

Interesting.
But what a nightmare for conservationists.
Do you leave it for people to see and watch it fall apart as it dries out.
Do you re-bury it to preserve it (if future development permits.)
Do you lift and conserve it in a museum? (expensive)

I would not like to have to decide.


Glass it over for people to see and control the environment beneath the glass, fine jet spays etc. Only problem would be sunlight, dont know enough about the subject to speculate on that.

(Take a look at the Mary Rose project)

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I once had someone''s lamp in for repair and they told me that they had a ''Petzl Duo'' that they could use. I didn''t sleep well that night and got up early to finish their lamp.
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Tamarmole

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Location: Tamar Valley

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200 Year Old Wooden Waggonway Uncovered!
Posted: 27/07/2016 15:43:20
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rufenig wrote:

Interesting.
But what a nightmare for conservationists.
Do you leave it for people to see and watch it fall apart as it dries out.
Do you re-bury it to preserve it (if future development permits.)
Do you lift and conserve it in a museum? (expensive)

I would not like to have to decide.


When the archaeologist Robert Waterhouse discovered a pair of waggon turntables dating from the 1810s at Morwellham (probably the oldest railway turntables in the world) about a decade ago they were recorded in situ and reburied. There were moves to lift them, conserve them and display them, however the cost was prohibitive.

My personal view at the time was that, given they were under no immediate threat, they should be left in situ. If nothing else my feeling was that removing them would destroy their context. Lifting should really be a last resort.

On one occasion in 2010 I had to physically stand in the way of an idiot digger driver who was going to put a pipe trench right through them. This was in spite of their having been scheduled. This took place soon after the site had been sold and had been taken over by a private company (it had previously owned by a charitable trust when the excavation had been undertaken).

Whilst I an not suggesting that this was in any way a malicious action it does highlight the fact that sites do change hands and what at one time was seen a secure site where conservation in situ was a viable option, may not be so at a later date, demonstrating the need for ongoing monitoring of such sites. Leaving artefacts in situ requires a long term management strategy to ensure their ongoing survival.
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Digit

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200 Year Old Wooden Waggonway Uncovered!
Posted: 27/07/2016 17:42:33
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Jimbo wrote:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2379064/Wooden-railway-built-200-years-ago-discovered-near-colliery.html

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This is an old story from 2013.

The last I heard, which might or might not have happened was that the tracks were to be lifted and taken to Beamish for preservation. There was also the possibllity that a replica would be built at Beamish.

Perhaps someone in the area has up to date knowledge of what has actually happened.

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Jim MacPherson

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200 Year Old Wooden Waggonway Uncovered!
Posted: 27/07/2016 17:59:50
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I had a quick delve and there is very little about what has developed, this conference has recently happened and it was a topic.

http://www.rchs.org.uk/trial/gwpf.php?wpage=early-railways-conference

Brief mention here but that seems to be it, maybe deep thinking is in progress.
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Miles-M

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200 Year Old Wooden Waggonway Uncovered!
Posted: 28/07/2016 15:10:28
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Nice discovery indeed.

On a practical level, what the heck does one do with it? Sadly I can't imagine anyone but the staunchest railway buffs ever bothering to come and see it so mary-rose style preservation is unlikely to get the funding.

Sadly, I think just burying it again is about the limit of what's practical...
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Jim MacPherson

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200 Year Old Wooden Waggonway Uncovered!
Posted: 28/07/2016 15:19:44
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A little more (again from 2013) with some nice photos but still no new news, maybe when the conference proceedings are published?.

http://beamishtransportonline.co.uk/2013/07/the-mysterious-wooden-waggonway/

At one time Freddy Shepherd was proposing to move (some of) it to a museum (of his?) in Jesmond.

According to the North Tyneside Steam Railway Association the track was removed in Sept 2013 and it's undergoing preservation/controlled storage at the Stephenson Railway Museum. If you go to the museum's website

https://stephensonrailwaymuseum.org.uk/collection

and search their collection for waggonways they have a brief summary of what they have and it's history.
IP: 87.114.243.177 Edited: 28/07/2016 18:37:26 by Jim MacPherson
Llion

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200 Year Old Wooden Waggonway Uncovered!
Posted: 28/07/2016 22:07:53
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Wow, now that is cool Thumbs UpThumbs Up I'm not a anorak, but that's a nice find Big GrinBig Grin Some good pics on the link Thumbs UpThumbs Up

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Me... Back n Boogying ag wrth n modd IP: 92.26.189.42 Edited: 28/07/2016 22:08:54 by Llion
Tripod

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200 Year Old Wooden Waggonway Uncovered!
Posted: 29/07/2016 10:00:32
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Interesting!

It's an old story and I'd always thought the tracks were left after surveying was done. The site protected etc.
Now - I live about 4 miles from the Stephenson Railway Museum so will have a looky as soon as I get time and will report back.

Apologies to all for not actually reporting on this story at the time. I'm a bit of a 'sleeper' here and come and go!
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TheBogieman

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Joined: 12/02/2013
Location: Mold, NE Wales

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200 Year Old Wooden Waggonway Uncovered!
Posted: 29/07/2016 11:36:44
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Very interesting but as has been said, conservation a nightmare, just what to do.
We've got some slotted wooden sleepers in Cwmorthin (and some lengths of wrought iron flat bar rail if you know where to look), must date back to the 1880's and will have been under water from 1901'ish to the early 1930's. They're wonderful examples but what to do? Carefully soak for a few years in PEG like the Mary Rose timbers or leave in the generally damp conditions in situ. Asked an archaeologist friend and she suggested leaving in situ unless advanced decay takes over.
A real dilemma for those archaeologists in the NE...
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Tripod

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200 Year Old Wooden Waggonway Uncovered!
Posted: 29/07/2016 13:03:21
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Yup a real headache.

I've entered old workings that had been sealed for over a century. Within two weeks the timbers had stunning fungi growing out of them. Expose any timber to spores and god knows what and they're doomed.
A costly process indeed but will try to find some info when I can..
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Jim MacPherson

Joined: 02/09/2015

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200 Year Old Wooden Waggonway Uncovered!
Posted: 29/08/2016 12:53:31
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In addition to Tyne and Wear Archive and Museums having some of the bits the National Railway Museum is also conserving some. Info from Beamish Transport OnLine. IP: 146.200.107.6
Roy Morton

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200 Year Old Wooden Waggonway Uncovered!
Posted: 29/08/2016 23:43:42
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A wooden wagon road was also discovered in Nangiles Mine (Cornwall) when Consolidated Goldfields opened the place up in the 1960's. Photographs exist but can't quite recall in which book I saw them.
Age is debatable, and although Nangiles mine is ancient in origin, it was also extremely acidic, and so iron rails would not last very long at all. By that token, they may even be quite 'recent'

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Jim MacPherson

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200 Year Old Wooden Waggonway Uncovered!
Posted: 09/11/2017 12:16:57
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Just a bit more in relation to the waggonway, and it's free!


http://nearyou.imeche.org/near-you/UK/North-Eastern/event-detail?id=14125&utm_campaign=506065_RG_North-Eastern-Update_Nov17&utm_medium=email&utm_source=imeche&dm_i=3X32,AUHD,2YXUI1,1413O,1
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PeteJ

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Location: Frosterley, Durham

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200 Year Old Wooden Waggonway Uncovered!
Posted: 11/11/2017 20:11:59
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There are several places in the North Pennines with wood rails in situ underground. Sometimes underwater, sometimes not. They all seem to survive in different conditions.

Surely best to record the details and leave them in situ.

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Pete Jackson Frosterley 01388527532
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TheBogieman

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200 Year Old Wooden Waggonway Uncovered!
Posted: 11/11/2017 20:29:20
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Those in mines that are under water will probably survive as they've been pickled in soluble sulphate salts from sulphide ores or carbonates from the likes of carbonate ores. Acts like Cuprinol!

My archeologist friend says leave these in situ unless absolutely threatened. The problems come with any new ones found in dry mines. Over the many years they will have stabilised but introduce moisture eg. from breathing or by breaking a seal on a level allowing moist air in, when you enter, you will almost certainly be carrying mould spores on your clothes and before you know it, there's a heap of dry rot dust where the sleepers and wooden rails once were...

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