RE the recent articles on train spotting in The Bugle. Going back many years when I was a nipper, I too was a train spotter with an Ian Allen book.
I lived in Brierley Hill where our gang's domain was a piece of waste land off Tackeroo Bridge, Moor Street, known as the Black Waggon, or to us 'urchins' "The Blackie."
On this land we played football, cricket, cycle speedway and anything else that came to mind.
There was also a brook and a labyrinth of old air raid shelters in which we made camps.
Running alongside this waste land was the main passenger line from Wolverhampton to Stourbridge, which was convenient for we train spotters. Also a few hundred yards to the other side of "The Blackie" was another line known as the "Bottom Line." This was a goods line from Wolverhampton to Stourbridge.
Sometimes during our game of 'footie' a cry would go up: "There's a Nermer on the Bottom Line." The 'footie' was halted for a while as we raced full pelt to the Bottom Line. More often than not it would be the same old engine, a "Manor Class" I think, which we had seen many times before. This was greeted with a chorus of boos and: "Chuck it off the line". Then we went back to the footie.
I think the Top Line is still used, but I think the Bottom Line gave up the ghost many years ago.
I have many memories of "The Blackie", the trains and the things we got up to around the station. I also remember a large shed just to the north of the station known as the "Stalage" where we got up to all kinds of mischief.
What great times we 'urchins' had in those good old days.
Colin (Olly) Turner,
11 Maygrove Road, Kingswinford.