Saturday, February 1, 2014
The road embankment at Wolverton Station
You can see the peaked roof of the third station and the large signal box which once controlled traffic through and around the station. In the background is the then recent Gables Tower block.
About a decade before this photo the bridge had been raised further to accommodate the electric power cables so this embankment became even steeper. The road configuration has changed now but at one time the Newport Road started to rise to the left of this picture and made a sharp left hand turn at the junction with the Haversham Road. This hill was entirely artificial.
As you can see from the foreground here the natural slope is fairly gradual. 1t rose to canal level, which is a good bit below the level of the railway line which was not here before 1880. The original railway line went along what is now McConnell Drive, close by the Tesco car park and the access road to the Old Wolverton road was closer to Wolverton Park. There was probably a hump-backed bridge over the canal but even so the slope would have been much more gradual than it is now.
In 1844 a new road was constructed from Wolverton to Stony Stratford and has been since then the main road between Wolverton and Stony Stratford. The old road was no longer supported by the Turnpike Trust and probably deteriorated until roads were taken over by County Councils in 1888. This became the "Old" Wolverton Road.
The LNWR decision to build a railway bypass so that the Works would not have to straddle an increasingly busy main line, led to the creation of the embankment, a third station (seen here), a second bridge over the Old Wolverton road, and, as a by-product of these decisions, a new sports ground in the field between the two railways. The new line opened in 1881.
Ever since then, people have had to labour up a steep hill to get to Wolverton.