Former Railway Works (cambrian Works)
- HER Number (PRN): 18687
- Site Name : Former Railway Works (cambrian Works)
- Protected Status:
Grade: II Ref No.: 1602-0/12/71 Title: Title not entered Type: Listed Building
- Protected Status:
Grade: II Ref No.: 1054302 Title: FORMER RAILWAY WORKS AND ATTACHED FOOTBRIDGE Type: Listed Building
- Civil Parish:
- Grid Reference: SJ 2958 2999
- Related Monuments:
- Brief Description: A former railway works, (now used for storage), and attached footbridge, of c. 1866, with later additions and alterations, which are protected by Grade II Listing.
- Description: Shown on OS- map as Engineering Works.
Railway works, now used for storage, and attached footbridge. Circa 1866 with later additions and alterations. Red brick, slate and corrugated iron roofs with coped verges. 2 levels with third level to central gable; 3 gables to centre with lower gables to left and right; 7-bay engine shed to left with 3 further gables to right of central gables; round-arched windows with cast-iron glazing to centre 3 gables with roundels above (blind to left and right); 19-bay round-arched arcade to ground floor, partly infilled and with C20 openings inserted to outer bays of left and right centre 3 gables; twin round-headed arches to the left and right of 3 gables to right (central gable re-built in C20 red brick but formerly with similar arches); lantern with weathervane to ridge of tall central gable; courtyard entered through arch in right bay of centre right gable has section of track and position of former turntable; tall tapering octagonal brown brick stack to rear of courtyard; 2 further former engine sheds to left concealed by late C20 corrugated iron and brick construction. Footbridge: attached to the left of 3 right gables; cast-iron with latticed parapet, supported by 2 sets of cast-iron columns and central-brick pier: links railway works with Gobowen Road. Built to serve the newly-formed Cambrian Railways Company, the works cost £ 28,000 to construct and were opened in 1866; closed in 1966.
Richard K. Morriss, Railways of Shropshire (1983) p38;
Rex Christiansen and R. W. Miller, The Cambrian Railways, Vol. II 1889-1968 (no date) pp175-76. <1>
Cambrian Works erected 1865-66, comprised extensive workshops, with 150 foot high chimney. <2>
CMHTS Record Sheet. <3>
CMHTS Report. <4>
The Cambrian Railway company was formed in 1864 from several smaller railway companies in mid Wales and the Marches, including the Oswestry & Newtown Railway and the Oswestry, Ellesmere & Whitchurch Railway. The new company made its headquarters in Oswestry, even though it was near the east end of their network, and in England. The works were based on the slightly earlier Coleham depot of the Shrewsbury & Hereford Railway. They opened in 1866 and the Cambrian became the town's biggest employer. The 150 foot high octagonal chimney was a prominent feature of the skyline. <5>
A 2002 assessment described this building as being in good condition and in business use. A description of the building's architecture (and of the adjacent footbridge) is given. <6>
List Entry Amended 15/12/2010 by insertion of a new Description:
A former railway works with attached footbridge of 1865/6, attrìbuted to Sharp, Stewart & Company, Thomas Savin and John Robinson, with later additions and alterations.
MATERIALS: Red,brown and blue brick, slate and corrugated iron roofs with coped verges. Some sheds, and their roofs, are constructed of steel.
PLAN: The main range of the works has a two-bay central section arranged over three storeys, with two-storey, three-bay buildings attached to either side. The group forms the former works offices, stores and washhouses. It has later, inserted staircases and wall divisions. Either side of the group, and to the rear, are long ranges, a single-bay wide, that form a courtyard. To either side of the main range are locomotive and carriage sheds. The seven-bay sheds to the left (the former carriage shops) are subdivided by a red brick division with round-arched openings, alternately sealed in red brick. The sheds to the right, with an attached footbridge, have been redeveloped with new buildings inserted, and their historic layout is no longer legible. The other sheds, the wagon and paint shops and the foundry, remain in their original open plan, although there is a heavy steel and concrete structure inserted at the north-west end of the wagon shops. The cambered arches between the carriage and wagon shops have been infilled.
EXTERIOR: The main façade has three gables to the centre, with lower gables to the left and right. To the left is a seven-bay engine shed (the former carriage works). To the right are three further gabled ranges. The windows are round-arched with cast-iron glazing to the centre. The central gabled ranges have roundels, some of which are sealed. The larger windows to the ground floor form a 19-bay round-arched arcade. There are C20 openings inserted to the outer bays of the centre. The three gabled ranges to the right have reconfigured openings to the front. The south-west flank wall has twelve round-arched openings with blue brick arches. A courtyard is entered through an arch in the right bay of the centre-right gable. The eleVations facing the yard have a range of openings with round or segmental arches. Some openings are sealed and fenestration is a mixture of cast iron and timber. The boiler house range to the south-east has a tall, tapering, octagonal chimney of brown and red brick. Attached to the north-east of the seven-bay engine shed are three sheds of phased construction.The northernmost two sheds (the former wagon shop) are steel-framed, early C20 structures, clad in later C20 steel sheet. The former paint shop shed to the south-east has a red brick exterior with stone kneelers, skew arches, original shop doors, and an arcade of blank arches along its south-eastern wall. The roof structures of the sheds have a variety of treatments, but are partly of early-C20 date. The roof of the central gable has a lantern with a weathervane to the ridge.
The footbridge is attached to the left of the right gables. It is constructed of wrought-iron, latticed trusses, and supported by two sets ofcast-iron columns and a central brick pier.
INTERIOR The central bays of the main works building have been reconfigured with the insertion of partition walls, ceilings and staircases. Structural cast-iron columns remain in situ. The roof structures are constructed of substantial timber beams in a queen-post arrangement. The connecting bays, former shops and the smithy, are open areas with no fittings of note in the areas inspected. The bays to the right, formerly the locomotive and tender shop, are currently being restored and refurbished, and new buildings inserted within the envelope of the building. The C19 sheds to the left, the former carriage shops, have cast-iron columns supporting the roof. The C20 sheds further left are supported by steel structure.
SUBSIDIARY FEATURES: To the rear of the works buildings is a red brick sheet room, with an attached C20 range, and a further attached C19 single-storey gas works. The sheet room has a queen-post roof and attic lights, although there is no first-floor structure. HISTORY: In 1848, a branch of Shrewsbury and Chester Railway was the first rail service to reach Oswestry, but it was not until 1860, when David Davies and Thomas Savin had built the Oswestry and Newtown Railway, that the town began its rise to regional prominence as a transport hub. Successive railway lines brought prosperity to the town, which doubled in size between 1851 and 1901, and saw the construction of a number of grand and prominent buildings. In July 1864, a number of these Welsh and English railway lines were consolidated to form the Cambrian Railways, thereby providing an important component of the emerging national rail network. The Cambrian Railways connected Wales with the West Midlands and the cities and industrial areas beyond. In 1866, Oswestry became established as the administrative and engineering headquarters of the Cambrian Railways. A large station, with first-floor company boardroom, and a railway works were built, along with ancillary structures such as a goods shed, a footbridge, a signal box, and a signal post. The works was commissioned by the Cambrian board to fulfil the pressing need for the construction, repair and maintenance of railway locomotives and rolling stock. The design was based on the Shrewsbury and Hereford Railway works at Coleham, Shrewsbury, and is attributed to the Manchester locomotive builders Sharp, Stewart & Company, with detailed specifications by Thomas Savin. The works was built under the supervision of Cambrian engineer George Owen and architect John Robinson of Manchester. The main works building is shown on the Ordnance Survey Map of 1875. The works was adapted and expanded in the later C19 and early C20 to include a gas works and other structures. With the expansion of the national road network in the interwar period and later, the railways gradually fell into decline. The works were closed in phases through 1964-6, culminating in the closure of the locomotive repair shops on 31 December 1966. Passenger services through Oswestry ceased in November 1966 and goods traffic stopped in 1988, by which time the works had been converted for other commercial uses. In 2010, the former works has been adapted for a variety of uses and there are proposals for further change.
R Christiansen and R W Miller, The Cambrian Railways, Vol. I, 1967: 22, 138-140, 144
R Christiansen and R W Miller, The Cambrian Railways, Vol. II, 1968: 49, 175-176
R K Morriss, Railways of Shropshire (1983), 38
N Pevsner arid J Newman, The Buildings of England: Shropshire (2006), 460
J Pryce- Jones, Oswestry A Local History (2000), 62-64. <7>
A heritage statement of the former Cambrian Railways railway sheds at Oswestry was prepared in 2007. The statement included desk-based assessment of the significance of a number of buildings, 4 bays of the locomotive workshops of the former railway works and a sheetroom and gasworks which belong to the 1866 complex. A description of the historic fabric of the buildings, and photographs taken during a site visit are included.->
-> Bays 1 and 2, to the NW of the site were the last sections of the locomotive complex to be constructed, with essentially lightweight structures built over the tracks leading into the works. They date to the early 20th century. They are identified as a Wagon shop on a plan of the works from 1904. Bay 3, to the south of Bays 1 and 2, was built around 1900. The shed was constructed to be the Paint Shop and was originally a free standing structure. The gable elevation retains the original timber doors and three skew arches to the openings. Bay 4, to the west, was completed along with the earliest construction of the Locomotive Works in 1866 and originally served largely as the foundry. ->
-> To the SE of the site are a former gasworks and sheet room (sheet metal works). They were both part of the original 1866 complex, and are recorded as in a poor state of repair. ->
-> Proposals are mooted for the demolition of Bays 1 and 2, to the NE of the site, the sheetroom and gasworks and the retention of Bays 3 and 4. <9>
A further heritage statement of the former Cambrian Railways railway sheds at Oswestry was prepared in 2008. As in <9>, the statement includes a a desk-based assessment of the buildings in the ownership of Richard Burbidge Limited. <10>
In association with proposals for the former Cambrian Railways railway sheds, a site visit was undertaken by Peter Booth, Conservation Officer at Oswestry Borough Council and Henry Thomas for the Cambrian Railways Trust. Correspondance includes some historic photographs of the railway sheds. <11>
An architectural analysis and design statement was prepared in 2006, in connection with proposals to convert the north wing of the former Cambrian Railways works into a primary care health centre. <12>
- Record Type: Building
(01) List of Buildings: Department of the Environment (DoE). 1986-May-15. 11th List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest. Vol 1602-0. List volume. p37. (02) Monograph: Watkin I. 1920. Oswestry with an Account of its Old Houses, Shops, etc, and Some of their Occupants. p332-333. (03) Record form: Dalwood Hal. 1993/ 1996. CMHTS SMR Records Shropshire: Oswestry. Central Marches Historic Towns Survey record form. Vol 8. Oswestry 18687. (04) Historic landscape survey report: Dalwood Hal et al. 1996. Archaeological Assessment of Oswestry, Shropshire (CMHTS). Hereford & Worcester CAS Rep. Rep 333. (05) Monograph: Morriss Richard K. 1991. Railways of Shropshire. p32. (06) Deskbased survey report: Hislop Malcolm. 2002. Oswestry Railway Lands - an archaeological desk based assessment. BUFAU Rep. 952. (07) List of Buildings: Department of the Environment (DoE). 1986-May-15. 11th List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest. Vol 1602-0. List volume. p 37. 17th Amendment (Description) 15/12/2010. (08) Monograph: Trinder Barrie. 1996. The Industrial Archaeology of Shropshire. p63. (09) Field survey report: Taylor Young. 2007. Assessment of the heritage importance of the Richard Burbidge Ltd owned elements of the Cambrian Railway complex. 3710-HS. (10) Deskbased survey report: Taylor Young. 2008. Heritage statement, Richard Burbidge site, Oswestry. (11) Correspondence: Cambrian Railways Trust. 2009. Correspondance concerning Burbidge Site, Oswestry (re: railway buildings). Peter Booth. (12) Field survey report: King M J. 2006. Cambrian Railway Works, Gobowen Road, Oswestry: an architectural analysis and design statement. King Partnership Rep.
- Related Places:
- For more information contact: Shropshire Council HER
- Date Last Edited: 04/07/2018 11:41:09