Greenside Tunnel

Goods traffic first troubled the sleepers of the Great Northern's branch to Pudsey Greenside in 1877, with passenger traffic inaugurated on 1st April 1878. But it was not until 1st December 1893 that a through route was driven towards Bradford - a function of the GN getting into bed with the Lancashire & Yorkshire to use its lines. It involved the construction of a huge embankment and the 618-yard Greenside Tunnel.

The structure is curved at both ends to follow an S-shaped alignment and features a single ventilation shaft around 240 yards from the western entrance. Now capped, this is located beneath the access road to a collection of garages.

The attractive stone portal at the east end cowers below near-vertical retaining walls on the south side of the approach cutting. The opening is partly blocked by tipped spoil. Comprising the lining are masonry side walls to a height of around 7 feet and a roof arch in engineering brick. Amply-sized refuges, also in brick, are provided throughout at regular intervals in both walls. Mirroring its sibling, the substantial west portal is stone built with buttresses and wing walls to each side.

The line through the tunnel saw its last traffic on 6th July 1964. Permission has since been granted to infill and landscape the eastern approach cutting but this seems to have been postponed due to local opposition.

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Aug 11

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