The spring weather prompted this member of the sometime mid-week gang to take a look around Cheltenham Racecourse Station and consider where a bit of one-off effort might be useful. Platform 2 sprang into view and, although I am not aware of any immediate plans for its use, it does form a big part of the visual backdrop of the Station.
As such, and noting that the Stark Gang have been busy keeping the bank in check, eliminating the numerous weeds and planting the new ‘garden area’, I thought that the state of the old building foundations could do with a dose of TLC. I assume the area has been excavated to some extent in the ‘recent’ past but our later activities of rebuilding and resurfacing Platform 2 have resulted in the foundation area fast becoming a somewhat neglected spot and a site for the dumping of soil and other debris. In fact there appeared to be a danger of the area blending into the bank and disappearing entirely!
So, I loaded up a builder’s barrow with trusty spade, shovel and brush and set out – thinking that it’s all in a morning’s work for a CRCS volunteer and would save on gym membership. Here’s a snapshot of progress after one morning’s work, with the top end looking reasonably clear but a fair pile of soil in the foreground.Actually, there’s an element of Time Team about the work: with various artefacts emerging to show what the buildings were used for, viz: the loos!
So without being Tony Robinson one can conclude that the left picture shows the sanitary ware bases of, I assume, the gents’ urinals and the right picture the toilet bases. I understand there was no foul drain (on either platform) and assume the 2 chambers visible on the far right were the holding tanks! Happy to be corrected if anyone holds a different view.
Returning for a second session this morning allowed the shovelling of a further 15 barrow loads of soil, broken bricks, perennial weeds etc. Which effort produced an almost completely clear building foundation – not exactly pristine but I hope it’s a bit easier on the eye for our customers and volunteers alike.
I reckon another hour’s work and it’ll do the job until GWR decide what the future holds for this part of the Station – perhaps we could use the area for something temporary in the interim?
Meanwhile, I’ve booked an appointment with the osteopath………
Regards from the mid-week gang/The Prestbury One.