Login Register
 °

It's back to the future on the Merry Hill monorail

By Black Country Bugle  |  Posted: June 30, 2014

By John Workman

  • Above and below, a sky ride on the futuristic monorail

  • Above and below, a familiar sight at the Merry Hill Centre, Dudley, back in the 1990s, as the two monorail trains crossed the shopping centre car parks roads on the elevated sections

  • The monorail of the 20th century, now part of Black Country folklore

Comments (0)

IT seems almost inconceivable to talk about a futuristic, transportation system in the past tense, but as Jack Room's school project report in last week's Bugle about the ghost station at the Merry Hill Shopping Centre revealed, it has been 18 years since the monorail was shunted into history.

The story has sparked a great deal of interest. An immediate response to the article came from Anthony and Kathleen Page who came into Bugle House with a collection of photographs. Kathleen told us, "My son David and I were keen photographers and the monorail was a favourite subject of ours when it was in operation. Luckily the train never went very fast so all the photos are pretty sharp."

Kathleen's photos were taken in the summer of 1990, making them an incredible 24 years old. She added, "David and I also caught the train several times and the ghost station in the article brought back a lot of memories. I suppose it was ahead of its time, and I know the technical problems that plagued it put many people off from using it in the end. But if it was still running today I'm sure it would bring a terrific amount of pleasure to railway enthusiasts, but especially children, a sort of sky ride in the clouds for the youngsters."

For the younger generation of today the monorail is the equivalent of the steam engines for anyone born after the mid 1960s. Sadly it now belongs in the annals of local history, a phase of space age travel the likes of which the Black Country may never see again. The Metro runs it a close second, but as far as reaching for the stars the monorail stands on its own.

Your memories of the monorail, especially if you were a youngster at the time, would be most welcome. Call 01384 567678. Alternatively email editor@blackcountrybugle.co.uk

Read more from Black Country Bugle

Do you have something to say? Leave your comment here...

max 4000 characters

YOUR COMMENTS AWAITING MODERATION

 
 
 

MORE NEWS HEADLINES