Other Links

  Redcar Station

Passenger services through the present Redcar Station began on 19 August 1861, serving the Saltburn line of the Stockton & Darlington Railway. The buildings at Saltburn and the intermediate Marske Station were designed by William Peachey but the company records imply that the plans for Redcar's office range were drawn up by a well-established Darlington architect, James Pigott Pritchett (1830-1911). However, its trainshed, identical with that at Saltburn, appears to represent a collaborative effort between Peachey and the S&D Engineer, William Cudworth.

The station frontage is a mildly Italianate design, whose rather austere detailing is mitigated by vigorously bracketed eaves. The middle of the office range has an upper floor, shown in original plans as housing a board room, refreshment room and 'private room' while the ground floor contained another refreshment room as well as extensive waiting rooms. The S&D evidently still had hopes for Redcar as a genteel resort when the building contracts were let in July 1860. However, these were soon overtaken by plans to develop a new resort at Saltburn instead. As a result, the upper floor languished empty for some years before being converted into a flat for the stationmaster.

The booking hall was in the centre of the office range, with convex (on plan) walls extruded into the corners nearest the platform. These funnelled passengers towards the platform entrance and also created two quadrants, one forming part of the booking office. The arrangement lasted only until 1871, when the main entrance was remodelled and these 'circular' walls were removed. These alterations, designed by Peachey, were to enable the building to cope with traffic growth and to provide for a larger booking office. Further changes to the entrance are largely concealed by the NER's somewhat ungainly canopy.

The original layout followed S&D practice for its larger stations in providing just one platform, accompanied by a pair of tracks: one serving the platform and the other for storing carriages. The trainshed was enclosed on all sides by brick walls and given a hipped roof framed by principal rafters trussed by wrought-iron rods passing over cast-iron struts. To start with, natural light was provided solely by bands of laylights in the roof and there was no obvious ventilation other than by the rail doorways at either end. This contrasts with the NER practice of providing a ridge skylight/ventilator. In 1871 high-level windows were inserted into the blind arcade of the shed's rear wall.

Redcar station, looking east, in 1987, with an LNER passimeter booking office sandwiched between the two columns within the entrance area.

The rapid growth of Teesside's iron industry made Redcar increasingly valuable as a place people could escape to and enjoy the fresh sea air. Hence the alterations carried out in 1871, which included a considerable westward lengthening of the platform. It was also widened, which meant doing away with the carriage siding inside the trainshed. To compensate for this, a two-road carriage shed was built alongside the platform extension. This was designed to match the station, to which it was linked by a screen wall with a (largely) blind arcade, which bore the rear of a spacious platform awning.

Modern view, looking north, with the 1871 carriage shed on the right. The present-day platform, with its timber fence, is set a little way in front of the original one.

Later developments include the provision of a large excursion platform further west as well as a distinct up platform, for services to Middlesbrough. In 1936 the LNER replaced the booking office with a labour-saving 'passimeter' one - combining an issuing office and ticket gate. The most drastic change came in the late twentieth century, when a new platform was built in front of the 1871 extension. This enabled the trainshed to be taken out of use, and this and the station offices were adapted to form the Redcar Station Business Centre. The work was done with scrupulous care, the main changes visible externally being the walling up of the end openings of the trainshed and enlargement of the windows in its rear wall. Booking and waiting facilities are now provided in a small modern building at the east end of the up platform, near the level crossing, which is watched over by an LNER signalbox (1937) which is itself a period piece. The next crossing to the east retains a pair of mildly gothic cottages by Peachey, dated 1865.








© W. Fawcett, 2011