(Photospam) A line still travelled (or aiding the enemy!)

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409 Minister for Railways

When I posted the photospam to Northfield, someone mentioned about how much the Adelaide suburban system has changed dramatically over the past 30 years or so and how photos can sometimes be hard to come by. After reading that, I knew what to do.

One distinctive feature of the Adelaide system in years gone by were the number of industrial spur lines that were served by a regular commuter services. The former Hendon, Finsbury, Penfield No 3, GMH and technically the Northfield lines were all examples of these spur lines which were once a part of the suburban timetable. Today, only one such line survives and even then, on a rather precarious existance. Ofcourse, the line I refer to is the Tonsely line which was only constructed in 1965 to serve the former Chrysler/Mitsubishi plant at Clovelly Park.

Yesterday, I walked the entire line using the UBD street map on the Noarlunga/Tonsely timetable as a guide from Ascot Park station to Tonsely before taking the last train of the day, the 17:16 service from Tonsely to Adelaide. One thing I was amazed with was how much time has 'frozen' on the line. Other then the terminus, the stations still have a very SAR feel to them and other then STA/TA standard signage as well as the installation of Ethel, you can easily think it is 1978, not 2008. Even the SAR standard lighting mounted on old rails with feed lines above the ground have been retained.

Ascot Park station where I began my journey. Even here at junction of the branch, there are still a couple of relics dating back to the SAR days.

The junction of the line to Tonsely just to the northern end of the platform.

One distinct feature of the Tonsely line are the flood openings which are of a design not seen else where. The sleepers are directly bolted to the concrete which is no wider then the sleeper itself and the rail hangs in mid air between the sleepers. This is the largest example at Ascot Park although there are several other small ones along the line.

The line peeling away up the small gradient at Ascot Park.

Daws Road level crossing. In the last photo, you can see the Noarlunga line overpass in the distance.



A relic from the STA days.

S bend between Ascot Park and Mitchell Park. It just wouldn't be TransAdelaide without a TSR sign.

Celtic Avenue level crossing. Timber boom gates are still in use here.

3007 between the level crossing and Mitchell Park station forming the second to last service to Tonsely.

Mitchell Park station.





The line between Mitchell Park and the next station at Clovelly Park. 3007 can again been seen on the second to last train from Tonsely, the 16:16 service to Adelaide.



Like the Northfield thread, I think we may need to pad this one out again although I only have another page worth of photos that need to be put up.

Enjoy!

 
fabricator Chief Commissioner

Location: Gawler

Anyone know what the flood openings were for ?

Obviously there was a creek or flood prone area there before the flats were build, I vaguely remember that area being vacant many years ago.

I did notice the concrete strips are far wider than needed to support the sleepers. Been pondering that feature for decades.

 
rhino Chief Commissioner

Location: Oakbonk SA

Well done Will, thankyou for posting those 8)

 
David Peters Dr Beeching

Location: With Dee Dee McCall

Not being sarcastic but the flood openigs are there to let water flow under the track uninhibited, then some stupid sod has built flats etc, in the very centre of the way the water will flow, sounds sensible I don't think! Rolling Eyes

 

Location: Banned

Interesting photos 409. I felt that the Tonsley line felt like traveling on a siding when I caught it - which is essentially all that it really is!

The feeling of the stations as portrayed in the pics is quite insubstantial and just a little platform in some suburban back streets, apart from

. Reminds me of Leawarra, VIC in a way. The passenger numbers I would assume are pretty light - I could have counted the number of passengers on the two Tonsley trains that I caught on one hand.

I have not seen any coverage of the Tonsley line (or the Outer Harbor line, or the Grange line, or more than occasional coverage of the Noarlunga line) on here for some time, thanks for posting Smile.

 
409 Minister for Railways

As I said at the start of this thread, if we can knock on to a second page, I can post the rest of the line including Clovelly Park and Tonsley stations. Since the line is only 3kms long, it was easy to walk beside the entire line so I got a lot of detail because I had time on my hands. Leawarra does indeed bear some simularities to Tonsley with the curved shelter roof in addition to, well, nothing Razz

 

Location: Banned

The Grange line would also be interesting to photograph - especially the section through the golf course! I wonder if you could combine a train and golfers in the same photograph. The smaller stops on that line, well at least Albert Park which I used once, still aren't as interesting as on the Tonsley! Evil or Very Mad

Why the need for a second page? Razz

 
Alco_Haulic Chief Commissioner

Location: Eating out...

Here we go! got to reach that second page!

 
Pressman Minister for Railways

Location: Wherever the Tin Chook or Qantas takes me

I think you'll find too many images on one page makes it a smeg to open for some, especially on dial-up.

Well done 409 these pics may be the only proof the line existed one day way off in the futher.

Is there much of the Industrial siding infrastructure remaining at Tonsley?

Edit Why is the word bit-ch in the word replacer? Can't we mention female dogs on Railpage ?

 
opendoorz Locomotive Driver

Location: please mind the gap when alighting from the train

nice work! i was going to take a trip down tonsley line the other day because i have never been down it but ran out of time.

 
phower Chief Commissioner

Location: Over on Kangaroo Island Sth Aust

is the shunting yards still there ? at Tonsley ? Rolling Eyes

 
409 Minister for Railways

There really isn't much in the way of siding infrastructure left on the line. After Clovelly Park, there is a set of points and a short section of the old Chrysler/Mistubishi siding left but it only runs for something like 100/200m or so. Another set of points also exists at Tonsley but the track leading from them has been removed although the reservation from the old siding still remains. The head shunt at Tonsley station is only long enough for an 500/800/830.

Pressman is right about the picture limit, I don't want to make life hell for those on a 56k connection so I have set a 25 picture per page maximum limit.

 
Pressman Minister for Railways

Location: Wherever the Tin Chook or Qantas takes me

well your almost on page 2  Laughing

 

Location: Banned

Will you be doing any more photospam threads for other lines, 409? Smile

 
409 Minister for Railways

Depends if I get a sudden inpulse to walk the line like I did for Tonsley. I was just doing nothing at home really then five minutes later, I packed my bag and was out the door.

 
Pressman Minister for Railways

Location: Wherever the Tin Chook or Qantas takes me

Depends if I get a sudden inpulse to walk the line like I did for Tonsley. I was just doing nothing at home really then five minutes later, I packed my bag and was out the door.

- 409

The best things can happen on impulse  Laughing

 
409 Minister for Railways

I have a sudden impulse to post more photos.

The reason why the line was built, to serve the automotive industry. Some of the last vehicles to be transported and delivered from the Mitsubishi plant are still on site.

Just wouldn't be TransAdelaide without one of these.

Clovelly Park station. Clovelly Park is virtually identical to that at Mitchell Park with the exception of not being painted in 'line colours'. If you removed the AdelaideMetro timetable display from the imagine, you could swear that the first photo was taken many years ago.



Once again, lighting and electrical standards from the SAR days has been retained.

Section of track between Clovelly Park and Tonsley.

Level crossing leading to the former entrance of the plant.

Signalling. Of note is the telephone box on the signal mast as well as a base, probably from a former upper quad.

Racks from the plant as well as the mainline as well as remnants of the former siding.

Tonsley. Also included are a couple of shots of 3008 forming the last railmotor service of the day, the 17:26 from Tonsley to Adelaide.




Some shots of the track at Tonsley station. The last switchstand operated set of points on the TA system can be found here as well leading to the headshunt just south of the station.







Enjoy.

 
Pressman Minister for Railways

Location: Wherever the Tin Chook or Qantas takes me

Very good thanks 409

I see you couldn't resist a couple of TA's famous sleepers  Laughing

 
sas85 Chief Commissioner

Location: V1

Did that date spike say 85?? If so I think there is going to be a flurry of collectors down there at first light!! Expanded the photo and swear it looks like 85, not 65

 
409 Minister for Railways

It is 65 with part of the number bashed down by the hammer. On an adjacent sleeper, I found another dog spike that I just pulled out of the sleeper without any effort (now in my junk pile) and it is most certainly 65. Certainly does look like 85 though and AN did use date nails into the mid 1980s in Tasmania.

 

Location: Banned

Thanks for posting those, reminds me of some trips I did on the Tonsley line in May 2007. Clovelly Park does look very desolate in those pictures - maybe not a place I would be in a great rush to be waiting at on a cold, dark night in the middle of winter for the last poxbox. Those stations aren't very busy anyway!

 
witsend Chief Commissioner

Location: Front RH Seat of a School Bus

409, Those are some good photos. It's been a while since I trekked the Tonsley Line, just so easy to use a car and the 297/MA1/MA2.

Just a note, there are 3 further departures along the Tonsley after the 17:31 services. They leave at 17:54, 18:14 and 18:41.

After travelling a 17:10/17:14 to Noarlunga, Depending where I parked my car, I often had to transfer to the Tonsley Train which goes through 18:48 at Woodlands Park to get back to the station where my car is. Each time, I'm typically scraping in on Multitrip too.

 
prr934 Train Controller

Location: Adelaide, SA



Some shots of the track at Tonsley station. The last switchstand operated set of points on the TA system can be found here as well leading to the headshunt just south of the station.

- A user

Isn't there a few switchstands remaining at Gawler for the old triangle there?

 
Alco_Haulic Chief Commissioner

Location: Eating out...

Love the 65 sign immediately contradicted by the TSR!

 
fabricator Chief Commissioner

Location: Gawler



Some shots of the track at Tonsley station. The last switchstand operated set of points on the TA system can be found here as well leading to the headshunt just south of the station.

- A user

Isn't there a few switchstands remaining at Gawler for the old triangle there?

- prr934

Yes there are, don't look the same as the Tonsley one though.

Its the last switchstand on a TA mainline anyway, rather funny that its on rotten sleepers, disconnected and out of use. Any other railway would have ripped it out and replaced with with a fresh track panel.

 

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