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TOPIC: 28MU Proposed Sub-site, Burbage, Derbs

28MU Proposed Sub-site, Burbage, Derbs 25 Jan 2018 21:42 #1

  • Carnaby
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RAF Harpur Hill opened in the spring of 1940 as the third of four underground ammunition depots. There had been strong opposition from the Duke of Devonshire to its construction, principally since Buxton was a popular Spa Town. In the event an Exercise of Compulsive Powers proved essential for requisition. However diplomacy meant relinquishing this intended extensive incendiary storage sub-site at Burbage.


The site straddled the N/S minor white road and extended from the road junction at the south (1265 contour), to the railway tunnel in the north. Its western boundary seems to have been the 1,375 contour line, and the eastern boundary the 1,200 line.

The 1940 RSP shows 24? semi-underground buildings of two sizes, each orientated roughly N/S, connected via narrow-gauge railway system.
There was a Decontamination Centre, Loco Sheds (standard and narrow gauge), Standby Set, Canteen and toilet facilites, plus offices and wardens hut. There was also a loading platform serving the two gauges.

The standard gauge railway can be seen entering the proposed site from the south. It comes from Harpur Hill and seems to end at the 1265 contour. I've had a look at the railway structure in this area and it's complex. The Harpur Hill line was a spur off the LMSR to Buxton, but the spur appears on an old map to continue north to Whaley Bridge.

Ian D may have info on this.
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Plan A is always more effective when the problem you are working on understands that Plan B will involve the use of dynamite :twisted:.

28MU Proposed Sub-site, Burbage, Derbs 25 Jan 2018 22:42 #2

  • IanDDavidson
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The standard gauge railway serving this proposed site is the Northern part of the High Peak Railway, an early mineral line linking Whaley Bridge and Cromford.

The RSP for this proposed site is a very good find!!

I believe the line from Whaley Bridge to Buxton was closed as early as 1892. There was a short piece south of Whaley Bridge retained to serve the yard at Shawcross, and at the Southern end the line terminated at the road bridge at SK 03486 72288.

This short stretch of standard gauge track from the proposed site to Harpur Hill stayed in use into the 1970's. So to provide standard gauge access across the site would require approximately 1KM of additional track.
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