|Clarkfield||35Miles 28Chains 48Links / 56.9km||Gisborne|
ABOVE: S 309 and T 344 roar through Riddells Creek on the noon up Bendigo to Melbourne pass. 1979.
BELOW, the same view 31 years later, Feb 2010.
Riddell's Creek was opened around 1862. It was a block post (using the telegraph instrument) by 1879 but only for the Up line. The Down line was worked under block conditions by 1888 and Winter's instruments had been provided by 1890. The station was renamed Riddell in 1904 as part of a policy to adopt short station names (the full name, sans apostrophe, was restored in 1976). A six lever frame was provided in 1927, but the frame only worked the signals. Riddells Creek was closed as a block post in 1993.
(Text from Andrew Waugh's 'Victorian Station Histories')
All points at this location were trailing and hand operated. The down signal on post 3 is called a home on the diagram. Although it does protect the points from the siding, it could be argued that it was a starting signal, as it was the authority to enter the Double Line Block section.
The contract for the construction of the stations platforms was let at the start of May, 1861. This was only two months before the Main Line through to Woodend was opened for traffic.
Riddells Creek appeared to be a magnet for newsworthy events. Since it's opening, it seems to have attracted more than its fair share of Media attention. A selection has been collected and consolidated on a separate Riddells Creek Media Page.
ABOVE: Despite the optimism of the developers around the time of the stations opening, it seems that for its first years, the station was not actually provided with a goods shed.
(Plan courtesy of SLV)
The Kyneton Observer, on April 21, 1863, reported on a disappointed deputation, who had argued the case for one's provision, (BELOW). (courtesy of TROVE).
Almost 12 months later though, on March 18, 1864 , a contract was let for the erection of the bluestone structure. Despite the more practical location depicted on the plan, it was built on the down side of the line. This was opposite to that of the township, which also then necessitated the installation of a level crossing.
ABOVE, Looking west toward Gisborne. The goods shed is on the left, adjacent to the down platform. This photograph was taken sometime after the signal alterations of 1908, but before the original station building was replaced in 1913.
The following three images, (courtesy of PROV), of the 1864 down side goods shed, are undated, but appear to have been taken in the 1960's or early 1970's:
ABOVE: West and south elevations.
ABOVE: West elevation.
ABOVE: View from up platform.
ABOVE: Undated image of Post 3, looking toward Melbourne, (also courtesy of PROV).
ABOVE: A 280 h.p. Walker railmotor passes post 2 as it approaches Riddells Creek while running the 12.20pm Spencer St to Kyneton service, sometime during 1979.
The up side siding had been removed prior to 1977, and although the down side siding was not officially abolished until 1987, the up end points had already been partially removed by the time this photo was taken.
ABOVE: After pausing at Riddells Creek and running about 20 minutes late, X43 hauls the afternoon pass up the 'Riddell bank' toward Gisborne. As it was a Monday, this train would only have run as far as Bendigo, (being extended through to Swan Hill on Tuesdays and Thursdays). Note the black background, (Sighting Board), fitted behind the up distant signal on post 4. This was provided in mid 1977, to help improve this signals visibility for trains approaching down the steep grade.
3pm, Monday, July 23, 1979. (image courtesy Geoff Winkler).
The following 12 photos were taken in February 1984. (courtesy David Langley).
ABOVE: The down side building/goods shed, looking towards Melbourne.
ABOVE: Looking towards Melbourne
ABOVE: Looking towards Melbourne showing the up home and down starting signal (called a home on the signal diagram) The trailing points from the goods yard are operated by a simple weighted lever.
ABOVE: The down side goods yard.
ABOVE: Close up of the "column box points" assembly in the goods yard. These were aslso known as Pot points
ABOVE: Padlocked locking bar in the goods yard.
ABOVE: Parcels shed on the up platform.
ABOVE: The c1913 up side station building, looking toward Melbourne.
ABOVE: The ornate awning/verandah on the down side.
ABOVE: View from the goods yard looking towards Melbourne.
ABOVE:Looking towards Melbourne. Post 2 has the up starting signal and down home on the same post.
ABOVE: The buffers for the long removed sidings on the up side, (probably removed mid 1970's).
ABOVE: 1903 VR plan
Feel free to email me with any corrections or comments
Page modified Jan 31, 2022