WikiWirral its great, register, enjoy and welcome.
Forum Stats
12331 Members
65 Forums
73265 Topics
989428 Posts
54 posts in the last 24hrs
Max Online: 7831 @ 8th Apr 2013 4:18pm
Who's Online - Click Me
81 registered (alan128, 13 invisible), 1392 Guests and 292 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Social Media : Follow Us


(Views 7days)This Weeks Most Read
Bexit Offer for EU Citizens 640
Every little helps... 260
Deja Vu, Lightning Strikes Thrice, Groundhog Day 180
Benefit Cap is Unlawful 171
VW t4 fixed side window replacement 145
audi specialised pls 132
Ipad 1 charger 114
Kingsway Academy 55
Mainstream Media- Over and Out 32
Portraying A Nation-Germany 1919-1933 Tate Liverpool 16
New General Forums
Mainstream Media- Over and Out
by RUDEBOX
Yesterday at 09:35 PM
Kingsway Academy
by lincle
Yesterday at 10:48 AM
Theresa May and the Holy Grail
by snowhite
25th Jun 2017 6:17pm
Deja Vu, Lightning Strikes Thrice, Groundhog Day
by fish5133
22nd Jun 2017 7:38pm
New Wirral History
Round the Wirral with a movie camera[1934]
by snowhite
16th Jun 2017 2:03pm
Bascule Bridge
by Sufee
6th Jun 2017 9:09pm
Pathe news short - merseytunnel 1934
by oldpm01
5th Jun 2017 1:57pm
1878 Post Office Directory of Cheshire query
by derekdwc
1st Jun 2017 10:41pm
Bakery at 275 Poulton Road 1925 onwards
by JAFitz
30th May 2017 8:59pm
Forum Tips
Photo Gallery Forums
wirral from Liverpool big wheel
New Brighton Big Wheel
Topic Replies
Every little helps...
by diggingdeeper
55 minutes 16 seconds ago
Apple TV box the 1gen
by Tait1969
Today at 05:20 PM
Sailing volunteers
by dogsbrain
Today at 10:19 AM
Bean to cup coffee machine
by monsterz4
Today at 08:56 AM
Ipad 1 charger
by _Ste_
Yesterday at 07:22 PM
Portraying A Nation-Germany 1919-1933 Tate Liverpool
by paxvobiscum
Yesterday at 07:06 PM
Shotwick - Old And New (Hall and Solar Farm)
by w10694
Yesterday at 06:42 PM
Bexit Offer for EU Citizens
by cools
Yesterday at 11:27 AM
live webcam from africa, a must see
by cools
25th Jun 2017 9:01pm
June
M Tu W Th F Sa Su
1 2 3 4
5 6 7 8 9 10 11
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
26 27 28 29 30
Recent Posts : What's On ?
Portraying A Nation-Germany 1919-1933 Tate Liverpool
by paxvobiscum
Yesterday at 07:06 PM
Shotwick - Old And New (Hall and Solar Farm)
by w10694
Yesterday at 06:42 PM
Page 1 of 5 1 2 3 4 5 >
Topic Options
Rate This Topic
#157355 - 31st May 2007 6:24pm Queensway Tunnel *****
BMW Joe Offline
Wiki Master

Registered: 30th Apr 2006
Posts: 12369
Loc: Birkenhead


Proposals for a road crossing the Mersey go back to at least 1825. It was nearly a 100 years before much happened. Passengers had 2 main ways of crossing from Liverpool. There were ferry boats to various points on the Wirral peninsula; by the 1920's they were carrying about 35 million passengers a year. The trains were carrying over 10 million passengers a year.

In 1866 an Act was passed for the construction of a railway tunnel under the Mersey linking Birkenhead and Liverpool. Construction started in 1879 and was completed at the end of 1885. The trains were originally steam driven. But the problem with smoke led to electrification in 1903. (Twenty years after the first electric railway opened at Brighton.)

In 1922 a committee was set up between Liverpool, Birkenhead, Bootle and Wallasey to draw up plans for a crossing. The crossing was probably intended as much for business use as for motorists. The ferries and railway could cope with the passengers, but they could not cope very well with goods traffic. There was to be a tramway in the bottom half of the Tunnel. The work during the construction would also help to reduce unemployment. The committee was chaired by Sir Archibald Salvidge from Liverpool. He was the main driving force in getting the crossing. When it was decided that the crossing route would be between Liverpool and Birkenhead, Bootle and Wallasey left the committee.

A major decision was whether it would be a bridge or a tunnel. It was thought that a tunnel would be much cheaper to build and maintain. They also thought that a bridge could be damaged or block the river if there was a war. Any bridge supports on the river bed might have caused silting.

The plan for a tunnel was ambitious, it would be the largest underwater tunnel ever built.


Another major decision was how the construction was to be financed. The government wanted the crossing to be free of any Tolls, but after several years of negotiations it was agreed that the government would pay half the construction cost, one quarter would come from the rates in Liverpool and Birkenhead and one quarter from Tolls for a period of up to 20 years. (The running costs of the Tunnel were to come from the rates.) This was authorised in a 1925 Act and a Mersey Tunnel Joint Committee was formed comprising of Birkenhead and Liverpool Corporations.

About this time the proposals for the tramway were put on hold. There were various possible reasons for this. One was opposition from Birkenhead who wanted to protect their Ferries, another was that the government had said that they would reduce their contribution if a tramway was laid. The Tunnel would however still be excavated and built for most of it's length with a massive space under the roadway designed for the Tramway.

A further Act was needed in 1927 mainly because the siting of the Birkenhead entrance was changed, which led to an increase in costs. The Tolls were now to apply for up to 25 years.

In 1928 there was a further Act to again change the Birkenhead entrance and also to move the Liverpool entrance from Whitechapel to the Old Haymarket. But the overall cost and Toll period was the same.

1933 saw yet another Act. This time the costs had increased by a massive 40%. This seems to have been mainly due to an incident in an American road tunnel, and a decision that there had to be a massive improvement to ventilation. (This of course wouldn't have happened with a bridge!) As the government would not give any more money, the Tolls were now to last for up to 40 years.

While all these Acts were being passed the actual construction started at end of 1925. It was a mammoth undertaking involving thousands of workers. The engineers in charge were John Brodie, Sir Maurice Fitzmaurice, and Basil Mott. The main tunnel (there were branch tunnels at either end) would be 2 miles 230 yards long, and it would be wide enough for 4 lanes of traffic with a total interior diameter of 44 feet.



The tunnel is not very deep, with the lowest point being only 170 feet below high water level in the river. (At one point, mid river, there is only 4 feet of solid rock above the tunnel. Perhaps they were lucky that they didn't get very very wet!) The pilot tunnel between Liverpool and Birkenhead was completed on 3 April 1928 when Sir Archibald Salvidge broke through the last rock (he hadn't done any of the rest of the digging!). Margaret Beavan, the Lord Mayor of Liverpool then shook hands with Alderman Frederick Naylor, the Mayor of Birkenhead. There were in fact 2 pilot tunnels, with the one for the roadway above that for the tramway.

The construction continued through various difficulties with excavation and drainage, and the unfortunate deaths of workers.

1,200,000 tons of rock were excavated using explosives and pneumatic drills between 1926 and 1931. The rock went to fill in Storeton Quarry on the Wirral side and to Dingle and Otterspool on the Liverpool side. The general technique used was to excavate and line the top (road) half of the tunnel, and then to excavate and line the bottom (tramway) half of the tunnel.



The main Mersey Tunnel has a circular section for most of it's length, presumably due to the tramway. There is a branch tunnel on each side of the river. The branches are semi circles with just a shallow space beneath the roadway. Part of the land sections of the "tunnel" were not tunnelled; they were built using cut and fill techniques; this includes the part which runs below Dale Street down towards the river.

The construction of the tunnel was massive in itself, but it also involved construction of gigantic ventilating machinery, shafts and buildings. The final cost of the tunnel and all the machinery etc was just over 6 million. With land and other bits and pieces this came to nearly 7 million or 7.5 million if you add the cost of borrowing during the construction.

The Tunnel was eventually brought into use on 17 December 1933, with an official opening on 18 July 1934.



Over 200,000 people gathered at the Old Haymarket to watch King George V and Queen Mary, officially open the Queensway tunnel.

As the national anthem played and the curtains began to rise, few were aware that the electrical mechanism had failed and instead two men were stationed either side, raising the curtains with hand cranks.

The Royal car led the way through the tunnel to Birkenhead, where three miles of crowds awaited their arrival, clambering on roof tops and hanging on to chimneys to obtain a better viewpoint.



On arrival, the Royal Party was introduced to Birkenhead's oldest inhabitant, 102 year old Sammual Gillingham. The party then went on to officially open Central Library on Borough Road, replacing the old library, demolished to make way for the tunnel entrance.

In the days that followed, the tunnel turned into something of a tourist attraction, with crowds watching the steady flow of traffic travelling between Liverpool and Birkenhead.


Liverpool entrance around 1960
_________________________
Autowirral.co.uk - The Northwest's Biggest forum of Motoring Enthusiasts.
Cruisewirral.com - The Northwest's Biggest forum of Modified Car Enthusiasts.

Top
Google Ads
#157382 - 31st May 2007 9:09pm Re: Queensway Tunnel [Re: BMW Joe]
Mark Online   Reading


Wiki Master

Registered: 9th Nov 2003
Posts: 21062
Loc: Wirral
Amazing joe, i really enjoyed reading that.
It looks huge the picture with the bloke climbing in side
with the wooden road so to speak.

Amazing thumbsup
_________________________
My Avatar images are all from the Wirral Gallery.Click Me
Wow Wirral History is coming along Great! Wirral History

we get +200 new members a month now smile

Top
#158527 - 14th Jun 2007 10:20pm Re: Queensway Tunnel [Re: BMW Joe]
Petei123 Offline
Smartchild

Registered: 10th May 2007
Posts: 558
Loc: Prenton
has any1 ever noticed that bit of the tunnel on the left (coming from birkenhead) its all dark and scary!!!

always wanted 2 no wats down der aswel

Top
#158529 - 14th Jun 2007 10:24pm Re: Queensway Tunnel [Re: Petei123]
Mark Online   Reading


Wiki Master

Registered: 9th Nov 2003
Posts: 21062
Loc: Wirral
This One Click me
_________________________
My Avatar images are all from the Wirral Gallery.Click Me
Wow Wirral History is coming along Great! Wirral History

we get +200 new members a month now smile

Top
#158531 - 14th Jun 2007 10:34pm Re: Queensway Tunnel [Re: BMW Joe]
Petei123 Offline
Smartchild

Registered: 10th May 2007
Posts: 558
Loc: Prenton
nooooooo.

wen ure in d tunnel goin 2wards lpool luk left b4 or after the part dat u can turn left at...


down der reli wierd jus a dark tunnel wiv no1 down der

Top
#158533 - 14th Jun 2007 10:36pm Re: Queensway Tunnel [Re: Petei123]
BMW Joe Offline
Wiki Master

Registered: 30th Apr 2006
Posts: 12369
Loc: Birkenhead
lol it leads to the dock entrance by corporation road
_________________________
Autowirral.co.uk - The Northwest's Biggest forum of Motoring Enthusiasts.
Cruisewirral.com - The Northwest's Biggest forum of Modified Car Enthusiasts.

Top
#158534 - 14th Jun 2007 10:39pm Re: Queensway Tunnel [Re: BMW Joe]
Petei123 Offline
Smartchild

Registered: 10th May 2007
Posts: 558
Loc: Prenton
well dtas poo an borin innit

fort it wudda led 2 sumwer mistikal wer d tunnel king or sum1 lives lol

Top
#158537 - 14th Jun 2007 10:40pm Re: Queensway Tunnel [Re: Petei123]
BMW Joe Offline
Wiki Master

Registered: 30th Apr 2006
Posts: 12369
Loc: Birkenhead
lmao, you never know...theres a few tunnels under the mersey lol
_________________________
Autowirral.co.uk - The Northwest's Biggest forum of Motoring Enthusiasts.
Cruisewirral.com - The Northwest's Biggest forum of Modified Car Enthusiasts.

Top
#158652 - 15th Jun 2007 6:00pm Re: Queensway Tunnel [Re: BMW Joe]
krisGTi Offline
Forum Master

Registered: 31st May 2006
Posts: 2855
Loc: moreton
Originally Posted By: BMW Joe
lol it leads to the dock entrance by corporation road

dose it leed 2 the 1 were its blocked off by walsh's mot place?
_________________________

Top
#158657 - 15th Jun 2007 6:21pm Re: Queensway Tunnel [Re: krisGTi]
BMW Joe Offline
Wiki Master

Registered: 30th Apr 2006
Posts: 12369
Loc: Birkenhead
yupp
_________________________
Autowirral.co.uk - The Northwest's Biggest forum of Motoring Enthusiasts.
Cruisewirral.com - The Northwest's Biggest forum of Modified Car Enthusiasts.

Top
#164613 - 2nd Aug 2007 5:03pm Re: Queensway Tunnel [Re: BMW Joe]
Mark Online   Reading


Wiki Master

Registered: 9th Nov 2003
Posts: 21062
Loc: Wirral
Just been on the Queensway Tunnel Tour taking you under the road
of the tunnel.

And i managed to click some more pictures too wink

Will write more soon, need to dash out.


Attachments: Viewing Permissions May Apply. Click Me
Image019.jpg

Description: Cross Section

Image020.jpg

Description: Pictorial of how the Queensway tunnel looks from the side and underground.

Image024.jpg

Description: Could these have been the first cars?

Image026.jpg

Description: Construction of the Tunnel

Image031.jpg

Description: Tunnel workers

Image035.jpg

Description: Not sure but it could be the ventilation shafts?

oldprices.jpg

Description: Opening Day Prices with today's money. (1934)

frontTourinfo.jpg

Description: Old picture of the Liverpool Ventilation shafts next to James Street Station.


_________________________
My Avatar images are all from the Wirral Gallery.Click Me
Wow Wirral History is coming along Great! Wirral History

we get +200 new members a month now smile

Top
#164614 - 2nd Aug 2007 5:05pm Re: Queensway Tunnel [Re: Mark]
Mark Online   Reading


Wiki Master

Registered: 9th Nov 2003
Posts: 21062
Loc: Wirral
p.s

See my Queensway Tunnel Topic with more pictures.


Click Me

_________________________
My Avatar images are all from the Wirral Gallery.Click Me
Wow Wirral History is coming along Great! Wirral History

we get +200 new members a month now smile

Top
#164628 - 2nd Aug 2007 6:59pm Re: Queensway Tunnel [Re: Mark]
BMW Joe Offline
Wiki Master

Registered: 30th Apr 2006
Posts: 12369
Loc: Birkenhead
Wish the prices were the same today as they were back then lol
_________________________
Autowirral.co.uk - The Northwest's Biggest forum of Motoring Enthusiasts.
Cruisewirral.com - The Northwest's Biggest forum of Modified Car Enthusiasts.

Top
#164949 - 4th Aug 2007 8:46pm Re: Queensway Tunnel [Re: BMW Joe]
Waddi Offline

Forum Guardian

Registered: 11th Jul 2004
Posts: 4006
Loc: New Ferry
do they do group bookings, we could all go together, WikiWirral on tour
_________________________

Top
#164951 - 4th Aug 2007 8:48pm Re: Queensway Tunnel [Re: Waddi]
fordsteve Offline
Forum Addict

Registered: 27th Jan 2007
Posts: 2126
Loc: wirral bromborough
good idea mate thumbsup
_________________________


Top
Page 1 of 5 1 2 3 4 5 >

Moderator:  Mark 
Random Wirral Images

Click to View Topic.
Newest Topics
Every little helps...
by palemoon
Today at 09:43 AM
Portraying A Nation-Germany 1919-1933 Tate Liverpool
by paxvobiscum
Yesterday at 07:06 PM
audi specialised pls
by Little_B
25th Jun 2017 5:02pm
Bexit Offer for EU Citizens
by granny
23rd Jun 2017 9:38am
Benefit Cap is Unlawful
by RUDEBOX
22nd Jun 2017 7:37pm
For Sale & Free
Bean to cup coffee machine
by monsterz4
Today at 08:56 AM
Ipad 1 charger
by madrob
25th Jun 2017 2:34pm
Washing machine
by GingerTom
20th Jun 2017 9:05pm
22" full 1080p hd and freeview tv
by monsterz4
20th Jun 2017 8:50pm
Apple TV box the 1gen
by monsterz4
20th Jun 2017 8:48pm
Featured Member
Registered: 2nd Nov 2011
Posts: 2382
Newest Members
Charlotte, OwenChristian, DaveAitch, Fairz87, mikerobbo84
12331 Registered Users
Today's Birthdays
No Birthdays
New Wirral Info
Portraying A Nation-Germany 1919-1933 Tate Liverpool
by paxvobiscum
Yesterday at 07:06 PM
Shotwick - Old And New (Hall and Solar Farm)
by diggingdeeper
15th Jun 2017 10:19pm
Sefton Park
by diggingdeeper
15th Jun 2017 10:02pm
Property Law
by lau2908
14th Jun 2017 8:04pm
van driver needed
by futurepast
14th Jun 2017 7:34pm
News : New Topics
Every little helps...
by palemoon
Today at 09:43 AM
Bexit Offer for EU Citizens
by granny
23rd Jun 2017 9:38am
Benefit Cap is Unlawful
by RUDEBOX
22nd Jun 2017 7:37pm
Finsbury Park mosque.
by Beethoven
19th Jun 2017 11:42am
Grenfell Tower - Notting Hill
by diggingdeeper
14th Jun 2017 5:13am
New Enthusiast Forums
audi specialised pls
by Little_B
25th Jun 2017 5:02pm
VW t4 fixed side window replacement
by Mike72
22nd Jun 2017 8:00am
Range Rover P38A Air Suspension Help Needed
by Martin1943
20th Jun 2017 8:06pm
Loving Home Wanted For 3 Cats.
by DavidC
20th Jun 2017 8:32am
Loving Home Wanted For 3 Cats.
by DavidC
18th Jun 2017 6:02pm
(Views 24hrs)Trending Newest Topics
Every little helps... 260
Wirral Sunrise Sunset
Sunrise Tue 4:45am
Sunset Tue 9:45pm
Local Time Tue 9:52pm
WikiWirral Can . . . .
Advertising Click me
To Advertise with
Wikiwirral Click Me