Railways

Railways in the Valley by Alan Rowles

Despite the fact that Killamarsh 100 years ago had a far smaller population than it does today, by 1898 it could boast 3 railway stations on three separate lines owned by three different companies. Add to this the branch line from Beighton to Holbrook Colliery and it would seem it was a train-spotters dream.

North Midland Railway

The first arrival on the scene was the North Midland Railway, later to become the LMS, with its line from Leeds to Derby which opened to traffic in June 1840. Known by railwaymen as the ‘Old Road’ this is the only route in the valley that is still operational. Its station at Killamarsh was on the south side of the Sheffield Road bridge and closed on 1st February 1954. It has now been demolished.

Killamarsh Midland Station

Great Central Railway

The reason for the name ‘Old Road’ becomes evident when one realises that the second railway did not arrive on the scene until 4th June 1892 when the Manchester, Sheffield and Lincolnshire Railway extended its line from Beighton to Chesterfield. Soon it was renamed the Great Central Railway and in 1923 the LNER. The station for this line was situated about 400 yards southeast of the Midland station, and closed its doors for the final time on 4th March 1963. As a through route to London, traffic ceased on 5th September 1966. The former trackbed now forms part of the Trans-Pennine Trail.

Killamarsh Central Station

The large building in the distance is Hi Peak Organic Feeds

Lancashire, Derbyshire and East Coast Railway

Last on the scene was the Lancashire, Derbyshire and East Coast Railway, whose line ran from Beighton Junction to Langwith and crossed Sheffield Road at Killamarsh on the tall and imposing bridge.

About a quarter of a mile beyond the bridge was Upperthorpe and Killamarsh Station, which, along with the line, opened to traffic on 1st October 1898.
Closure as a through route came on 11th September 1939, after which it terminated at Spinkhill where it served Westhorpe Colliery. The pit closed in 1984 and soon after the line passed into history.

Great Central Branch Line

As well as the three main lines there was also a Branch line in Rother Valley. This was part of the Great Central network, and left the main line at Beighton and ran for about a mile and a half alongside the Midland line to access Holbrook Colliery, which was just beyond Station Road. The bridge under which the trains ran is still in situ. and is directly alongside the old Midland Railway bridge beneath which trains still run.
Opened in 1891, traffic on the Branch line ceased soon after the colliery stopped drawing coal in 1944.