Thursday, 9 May 2013

The Hythe to Wivenhoe Railway Line - 150 years.

Wivenhoe Station Garden
 This week saw the anniversary of the arrival of the railway in Wivnenhoe. The mainline arrived in Colchester in 1843 and a branch line build by Peter Bruff in 1847. By 1859 the Tendring Hundred Railway Company was formed and the plan was to take the line to Clacton. The bill for the Wivenhoe line went before parliament in 1860 but legal wrangles and money problems delayed the railway until 1863.
Wivenhoe was already an active port for Colchester as vessels too large to dock at Hythe ran lighters to and from the Hythe from Wivenhoe. This was time consuming, hard work and expensive. The river was deepened in 1854 which meant Wivenhoe began to decline as a port.
The new branch line established Wivenhoe as a yacht building centre in 1870s and also as a major packing centre for oysters and sprats which arrived at the wharf in the Wivenhoe Smacks.
Wivenhoe from the other side of the River Colne.
The opening ceremony was marred by the death of 12 year old Emma Sainty who fell off a trolley and was killed when the wheels ran over her head. She is probably a relative of the well known Wivenhoe family of that name.
On Friday 6th may a single track opened and carried six passenger trains a day between Wivnehoe and Colchester. By October the shareholders were celebrating the line's success. It had already carried 11575 passengers and 1460 tons of goods, mostly fish.
Lady Mayor of Wivenhoe in Victorian costume.
Wivenhoe Station in 1950s.

Wivenhoe Quay today.
Steam trains.

1945 -Wivenhoe Quay.

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