SO6709 : Eastern portal, Haie Hill tunnel

taken 2 years ago, near to Upper Soudley, Gloucestershire, Great Britain

Eastern portal, Haie Hill tunnel
Eastern portal, Haie Hill tunnel
When this was constructed to take the Bullo Pill tramway through Haie Hill in 1810, it was the longest tunnel in the world at 1,083 yards. The Great Western converted the tramway into a broad gauge railway in the 1850s: this involved the construction of two new tunnels - Bradley Hill and Blue Rock, which burrowed through hills the tramroad had avoided - and the widening of Haie Hill. Traffic was not suspended while the tunnel was widened, leading Brunel to declare it "the most difficult task I have yet undertaken". Brunel's reconstruction of the tunnel led to 19 yards being lopped off its length: it opened to railway traffic in 1854. The line was converted to standard gauge (which Brunel dismissively referred to as "coal wagon gauge") in 1873. The Forest of Dean's industries kept the line busy for the most part, but in 1907 a passenger service was introduced: this lasted until 1958. The use of the line gradually declined with the closure of many of the industries it served. Berry Wiggins' decision to move their works from Whimsey to Lydney was the final nail in the coffin of the railway and it closed in August 1967.
Someone (not me!) has built a rather rickety pile of tree stumps to allow access to the tunnel, although how you get out again once you're in is anybody's guess.
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SO6709, 31 images   (more nearby search)
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Date Taken
Saturday, 13 June, 2020   (more nearby)
Saturday, 13 June, 2020
Geographical Context
Derelict, Disused  Railways 
Near (from Tags)
Area (from Tags)
Forest of Dean 
Primary Subject of Photo
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SO 6755 0998 [10m precision]
WGS84: 51:47.2517N 2:28.3110W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SO 6756 0998
View Direction
West-northwest (about 292 degrees)
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Other Tags
Old Railway Cutting  Haie Hill Tunnel  GWR  Forest of Dean Railway GWR  Tunnel Portal  Old Railway Tunnel 

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Image Type (about): close look 
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