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Heathrow before the Europa terminal and Queens building

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Heathrow before the Europa terminal and Queens building

Old 21st Mar 2021, 10:30
  #141 (permalink)  
 
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The rail line is perhaps visible in this photo (to a better trained eye than mine!)

https://www.britainfromabove.org.uk/en/image/EAW003344
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Old 21st Mar 2021, 11:09
  #142 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by GeeRam View Post
Line runs right under the M4/M25 junction from the GWR main line, and is still in use for the two concrete/aggregate works located in Thornley and Colnbrook. It was also heavily used for bring in materials and equipment to the purpose built logistics centre set up for building Terminal 5.
Also used for offloading aviation fuel brought in by rail and then piped to the airport:



Operation, Maintenance and Management Services for the Colnbrook Rail Terminal and Colnbrook Pipeline - Oil and gas pipeline consultant (bpa.co.uk)
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Old 21st Mar 2021, 12:06
  #143 (permalink)  
 
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The train line is a branch from the main line at West Drayton. It used to have a shuttle passenger train to Staines, using a separate unconnected station to the main one at Staines, which was given up in the early 1960s, but still has cargo trains as far as the several terminals in Colnbrook, for heavy building materials and jet fuel for the airport. These run as and when required, but there is one most weekdays and I've even seen two at once down at the end. The line runs right through the middle of the M25/M4 motorway junction at Heathrow, between the bottom level turning lanes, and a few years ago I had a train passing alongside there as I drove through from T5 back to London.

The oil depot (picture above) is not the mainstream supply to Heathrow, which comes by long-distance pipeline from the refinery, but is a very necessary reserve, still regularly used for a proportion of supply. When the Buncefield fuel storage depot exploded (10-15 years ago ?) it operated 24x7 keeping things going.
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Old 21st Mar 2021, 12:12
  #144 (permalink)  
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Buncefield was 15 years ago - time flies...
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Old 21st Mar 2021, 12:56
  #145 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by WHBM View Post
The oil depot (picture above) is not the mainstream supply to Heathrow, which comes by long-distance pipeline from the refinery
Via a new build (early 60's?) pipeline that connected up to the WW2 era GPSS and PLUTO fuel pipeline systems, one of the many immense wartime infrastructure projects undertaken in such a short period of time during the war, and which are still being used to this day to our benefit.

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Old 21st Mar 2021, 16:21
  #146 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by WHBM View Post
The oil depot (picture above) is not the mainstream supply to Heathrow, which comes by long-distance pipeline from the refinery, but is a very necessary reserve, still regularly used for a proportion of supply. When the Buncefield fuel storage depot exploded (10-15 years ago ?) it operated 24x7 keeping things going.
The Fawley - Heathrow pipeline runs right past my front door at the moment but is scheduled to be re-laid about 200 yards away next year.
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Old 21st Mar 2021, 16:37
  #147 (permalink)  
 
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Colnbrook rail depot

As described it currently ends facing south. However, the plans for R3 were that it arrives at a new siding facing west, for material (maybe fuel as well), carbon offset etc.
Pre Covid a new contract was signed between a rail freight operator and a fuel company (Kent coast), probably to feed T5 satellite (not T6).
Of course another new line via tunnel is proposed from GW line to T5, 1bn +. Both lines will impact on rail capacity, freight trains are slower.
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Old 21st Mar 2021, 17:52
  #148 (permalink)  
 
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The new runway should be No. 8, as there have been 7 runways at Heathrow already.
Perhaps the fallout of applying for an 8th runway may not be very good.
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Old 21st Mar 2021, 18:33
  #149 (permalink)  
 
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Ah Buncefield, about 6-8 miles away due South and happened to be looking out the widow to see the Weather for a Golf Game in Watford. Huge red mushroom cloud and the rumble about 30 seconds later...Radio report shortly afterwards advising M1 closed so cancelled Golf
Drove past next day still damping down
Seem to remember no one killed
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Old 21st Mar 2021, 18:49
  #150 (permalink)  
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No one killed thank God Kilty - I woke up around the same time that the explosion took place (early Sunday morning) and wondered if the bang had travelled 30 miles south and permeated my double glazing and slumbers... My colleagues had been working on the design for the rebuild when we folded - no reconstruction work visible on Google yet...
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Old 21st Mar 2021, 20:10
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Originally Posted by treadigraph View Post
No one killed thank God Kilty - I woke up around the same time that the explosion took place (early Sunday morning) and wondered if the bang had travelled 30 miles south and permeated my double glazing and slumbers... My colleagues had been working on the design for the rebuild when we folded - no reconstruction work visible on Google yet...
Our house near Woking shook badly at the right time so I'm guessing that was the shockwave so you would have felt it too..

Last edited by chevvron; 22nd Mar 2021 at 03:55.
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Old 21st Mar 2021, 21:19
  #152 (permalink)  
 
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We heard it at Canary Wharf. Colleague in Rickmansworth had garage window broken. The Laing construction company, relevant to a Heathrow history thread as they built so much of it over time, had their offices directly facing the site, they had merged into Laing O'Rourke about three years beforehand and had just finished consolidating everyone elsewhere and the offices were just finally vacant weeks beforehand. They were completely destroyed. Talk about fortune.

Last edited by WHBM; 21st Mar 2021 at 21:51.
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Old 22nd Mar 2021, 13:17
  #153 (permalink)  
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This is main entry for Buncefield Depot with a link in there to the fire in December 2005. I was away that weekend but my housemate about 8.5 miles away was rudely awakened. It measured 2.4 Richter Scale!

The site opened on the edge of Hemel Hempstead but, as in all places, the new town expanded steadily. There were a number of large offices on the eastern side of the industrial estate and some were prefab, rather than brick. Mostly they were shredded. If it had not have been six in the morning the death toll would have been enormous. The Wikipedia page is fairly detailed and lists that the explosion was the usual Swiss Cheese of failed equipment and failure to maintain. The site operator was found liable.

On a business trip today, I made a drive by of the site. Still some old tanks that look like they are waiting for removal but lots of new ones. Also various excavations, bunds and ponds evidently to do with fire precautions. I'm not sure when the pipeline reopened.

Last edited by PAXboy; 23rd Mar 2021 at 04:06. Reason: spelling
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Old 22nd Mar 2021, 13:51
  #154 (permalink)  
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My infrastructure engineering colleagues were working on the design of the bunds to contain spillage and so on. Actually, just looked at Google Earth rather than Google Maps so I could look at the site history and I see that while some of the storage tank area is still vacant, there are indeed new tanks in place on other parts which I thought were those left intact (or are they all to be replaced?). Also, remarkably or so it seems to me, part of the original tank farm is now a large Amazon distribution centre!
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Old 23rd Mar 2021, 03:08
  #155 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by WHBM View Post
This film was shot in 1962 driving along the A4 road.

Journey Without Incident 1962 | bpvideolibrary

From the 6 minute mark, for about a minute, it is passing Heathrow Northside. The road diversion seen there is around the works for the bridge over M4 motorway spur.
Is that perchance the Three Magpies at 6:40?
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Old 23rd Mar 2021, 04:23
  #156 (permalink)  
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Thanks for the suggestion treadigraph, that is a very good view of Buncefield. You can see clearly where some buildings have not been replaced and, therefore, how close they were!

There is a cemetery nearby (800m or so) which was undamaged of itself but - due to the very strong intake of air at low level by the fire to feed itself - the wind had collected LOTS of rubbish, paper, take away food cartons from the neighbouring area and so on that then got caught in the flowers, trees and hedges. Took them a long time to clear it all and it demonstrated the power of the fire in a very different way.
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Old 23rd Mar 2021, 09:58
  #157 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Commander Taco View Post
Is that perchance the Three Magpies at 6:40?
I think it must be. When did it come down ?

Notable also the 1930s housing on the opposite side of the road, all bought up and hotels put there.
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Old 23rd Mar 2021, 11:10
  #158 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by WHBM View Post
I think it must be. When did it come down ?

Notable also the 1930s housing on the opposite side of the road, all bought up and hotels put there.
I think the Three Magpies is still there? I wonder what else survives that is visible. I notice on Google maps that a bit of Cains Lane can still be seen inside the airport. I think it used to go right across to the Bath Rd prior to 1946.
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Old 23rd Mar 2021, 13:29
  #159 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by WHBM View Post
I think it must be. When did it come down ?
Methinks reports of the Three Magpies demise are greatly exaggerated.

Three Magpies pub in Heathrow | Greene King Local Pubs (greeneking-pubs.co.uk)
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Old 24th Mar 2021, 03:07
  #160 (permalink)  
 
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October 21 2019



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