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Signal Boxes At Westbury
Can anyone remember the signal boxes around Westbury Station and the local area before they were replaced by the new power or as sometimes referred to as the "Panel Box"?
There was Westbury North, Westbury South, and at onetime Westbury Middle. However the one box that is rememberd by many footplate crews is the signal boxes at Exeter. They were all replaced in the mid 1980s by a new electronic signalling system.
One of these boxes, Exeter West with over 100 signal levers still survives and has been totally restored. It is testement to the skilled workers of the GWR and signal engineers that it has survived from the 19th century.
Standing proudly at Crewe, in the railway heritage museum it can be seen in pristine working condition, operated by a dedicated group of volunteers. If you are in Crewe then go and visit it. The centre is open during weekends during the summer.
Bob one of the volunters is seen demonstrating the levers, but when you are there you can have a go yourself!
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Steve Wakefield lives in Swindon, though is no stranger to West Wilts having lived and worked throughout the area. He writes about and photographs railways, he is mainly interested in the period from 1830 to 1996 and the area of Wessex.