Tile Hill Kid - Canley Gates

There has been a Railway through Canley since 1838. The original Canley Halt was named "Canley Gates", likely opened in about 1850  - the gates were made to protect Canley Lane [now Canley Road] The fare from Coventry to Canley was about 2d [=0.5p] Trains running at that time were five 'up' and seven 'down', daily. 

“Railway Company to acquire Corporation Land” [Coventry Evening Telegraph - March 1937] 8.5 acres for Station at Fletchampstead - Widening of line to Tile Hill.
Widening and improvement of the L.M.S. Railway line from Coventry to Birmingham included the provision of a passenger and goods Station at Fletchampstead … Included were parts of Beechwood Avenue, Fletchampstead Allotments and a 7 acres strip of land between Beechwood Avenue and Tile Hill Station, 8.5 acres at Fletchampstead for the Station, 3 acres for a shunting neck, mostly, formerly belonging to Lord LEIGH, bought by the Corporation at £150 per acre. The Railway Company constructed an access road 50 feet wide to “Fletchampstead Station” at the foot of the embankment that will carry Coventry By-Pass Road [Fletchampstead Highway].

In 1940, “Canley Halt” [subsequently named] was opened, though the name later reverted to 'Canley Gates'.

The level crossing was located on Canley Road between Hearsall Common and the A45. The area around the crossing is suburban, with housing estates to the south and east and industrial units to the north and west. The A45 lies to the west, with several local roads and the A429 to the east. They all crossed the railway using bridges. The crossing was used by mainly local traffic. Canley Station was located to the west.

By the 1990's there was no footbridge for rail passengers. All pedestrians use the Canley Road level crossing waiting at the barrier when trains are passing. The rail traffic included stopping trains serving Canley Station and the long distance inter city trains. These trains necessitated the closure of the crossing to road traffic 135 times a day, regularly causing extensive queues and diverting traffic to other routes. The closing of the barrier equated to a total barrier down time of 30 minutes in the evening peak hour between 4 pm and 5 pm.

For the 21stC Railtrack proposed to upgrade the West Coast Main Line with the introduction of newer and faster trains, and more frequent services from London to the Midlands, North West of England and Scotland. The improved frequency of trains increased the barrier down times to the extent that the operation of the level crossing at Canley was no longer viable.
It was decided to close the level crossing and provide a footbridge for use by both rail passengers and the general public. This footbridge also serves the disabled and cyclists. The existing road was terminated either side of the level crossing with a turning head. These turning heads accommodate buses and large vehicles and maintain access to the properties adjacent to the crossing.

Site of Canley Crossing today, from pedestrian bridge [2008]. The change in colour of gravel shows where the road once crossed the line.

A WALK THROUGH 19thC TILE HILL ... [to be continued] ...

 

map of Canley Gates [now named Canley Halt, Canley Road] c1889

The former Gatekeeper's Cottge.

1881 Census

Dwelling: Canley Gates
Census Place: Stoneleigh, Warwick, England

Source: FHL Film 1341738 PRO Ref RG11 Piece 3096 Folio 47 Page 1
Marr Age Sex Birthplace
James H. TILLEY M 32 M Sharnford, Leicester, England
Rel: Head
Occ: Railway Signalman
Mary A. TILLEY M 34 F Helidon, Northampton, England
Rel: Wife
Charles T. NOON 14 M Leicester, England
Rel: Stepson
Occ: Farmers Boy
John TILLEY 10 M Badby, Northampton, England
Rel: Son
Occ: Scholar
Frances TILLEY 7 F Stoneleigh, Warwick, England
Rel: Daur
Occ: Scholar
James H. TILLEY 6 M Stoneleigh, Warwick, England
Rel: Son
Occ: Scholar
Herbert TILLEY 3 M Stoneleigh, Warwick, England
Rel: Son


Dwelling: Canley Gates
Census Place: Stoneleigh, Warwick, England

Source: FHL Film 1341738 PRO Ref RG11 Piece 3096 Folio 47 Page 1
Marr Age Sex Birthplace
Nathaniel POLLARD M 57 M Coventry, Warwick, England
Rel: Head
Occ: Railway Signalman
Elizabeth POLLARD M 55 F Coventry, Warwick, England
Rel: Wife
Charles V. POLLARD W 27 M Marston Green, Warwick, England
Rel: Son
Occ: Railway Pointsman
Joseph POLLARD U 25 M Marston Green, Warwick, England
Rel: Son
Occ: Watchmaker (Finisher)
Maria KIMBERLEY M 29 F Coventry, Warwick, England
Rel: Daur
Occ: Railway Porters Wife
Herbert KIMBERLEY 4 M Wednesbury, Stafford, England
Rel: Grandson

1851 Census

Head: GRIMWOOD, James 
Name Relationship Mar Age Sex Occupation Birthplace
James GRIMWOOD Head M 30 M Railway Policeman Botford-Suf
Sarah GRIMWOOD Wife M 30 F --- Nottingham----
Betsy Ann GRIMWOOD Daur U 7 F --- --- (Parish Not Known)----
Address: Railway Cottage, St John Westwood
Census Place: Stoneleigh Warwick, Warwickshire
PRO Reference: HO/107/2073 Folio: 23 Page: 1 FHL Film: 0087339


Head: BROADHURST, John 
Name Relationship Mar Age Sex Occupation Birthplace
John BROADHURST Head M 52 M Railway Policeman Walsol-Stf
Hannah BROADHURST Wife M 35 F --- Stoneleigh-War
Address: Railway Cottage, St John Westwood
Census Place: Stoneleigh Warwick, Warwickshire
PRO Reference: HO/107/2073 Folio: 23 Page: 1 FHL Film: 0087339

 

 

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