Re: Ballina

Noel Reed

Hello all,

I have a bit of information about the Ballina branch line from my early years of working with the NSWGR S&T Branch.


During the WW2 years, the main northern railway had been duplicated only as far as Branxton.  About 1948/49, increasing coal traffic from mines beyond Branxton were causing congestion on the single line which carried all rail traffic to and from the north and north west.


An early plan for duplication towards Singleton was to lay a second track beyond Branxton with light rails because  heavier rail was difficult to obtain at the time. The intention was that the second track was to have light rails only and was to be used for coal traffic carried  in the old ten ton private hopper  wagons, hauled by 50 class locos. The intended light rail for this project was to be pre-used consequent on closure of the Ballina line.


A plan was prepared for the use of single line track block  (i.e. bi-directional) working on both tracks between  Branxton and  Whittingham with remotely controlled crossing loops at Belford .  A new diagram was prepared for Branxton signal box from where the twin single lines would be controlled.


Before this scheme could be carried out, heavier rail  became available for the extra track.  Duplication with the usual Down and Up lines was used with the loops at Belford signalled as uni-directional refuge loops.


Noel Reed.  Railway signal engineer since 1948.


PS Has research on the Ballina line produced any details of the interlocking of a lifting bridge near Ballina ?


From: LRRSA@... [mailto:LRRSA@...]
Sent: Thursday, 1 October 2015 12:13 PM
To: LRRSA@...
Subject: Re: [LRRSA] Ballina


Hi Peter,


Thank-you for sharing your work.


I was keen to see the information on the former Ballina branch, however something is going wrong when I open the links. The file names suggest the files are 3MB. The files I am opening are about 107 – 133 KB. When I magnify the map, the pixelation loses all clarity.


Am I doing something wrong? All your previous maps, I have magnified, have all had very good definition.






Sent: Thursday, October 01, 2015 11:40 AM

Subject: [LRRSA] Ballina



I managed to scan the Ballina rail route maps at Murwillumbah Library recently. The Ballina end is from a 1942 map and most of the other end from a 1976 map with map names and scales on each. Some might be interested in this long closed NSWGR line.


Ballina end (3MB) Ballina-1942-3MB.jpg


Booyang end (4MB)    Lismore 1976 extract.jpg 



Peter Cokley

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