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#842843 - 10th Dec 2013 11:58pm Queensway tunnel
chriskay Offline
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Registered: 25th Oct 2007
Posts: 4868
Loc: shropshire
I recently acquired a booklet of tolls and regulations for Queensway from 1956/7. It has some peculiar rules: e.g. "The driver of a vehicle shall enter the Tunnel via an entrance and leave via an exit". Also, the picture of the Rendel St. junction has the unusual illustration of a "stepped" dado on the King's Square exit. I've seen this before on a postcard, but I think it was never like that and for some reason the picture has been doctored. In the past, I showed the postcard to the guide on a tunnel tour and she'd never seen it. Also, there's a reference to a prohibition of the use of "cut-outs; Pinzgauer has looked it up and it was an exhaust by-pass, which would have been very noisy! I understand it was used to increase engine power.


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#842850 - 11th Dec 2013 7:52am Re: Queensway tunnel [Re: chriskay]
billy_anorak59 Offline

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Registered: 4th Feb 2009
Posts: 199
Loc: Cambridgeshire
Thanks for that Chris - interesting. The 'stepped' dado looks very art deco - certainly not like that on this picture (is it the same junction chamber?)


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#842872 - 11th Dec 2013 9:08am Re: Queensway tunnel [Re: billy_anorak59]
bert1 Offline

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Registered: 27th Nov 2008
Posts: 7864
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The inside of the tunnel took on many changes over the years, cosmetically, I can't remember it looking like that, but it would only be a paint line and could change with the next lick of paint.


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#842882 - 11th Dec 2013 10:01am Re: Queensway tunnel [Re: chriskay]
Pinzgauer
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The stepped top to the dado is a mystery. The original black glass sheets secured/joined by stainless strips, were 10 feet long. Guessing at the ratio of the "step" to the length of a sheet, the step looks to be above 1 foot "tall" over about 3 sheets. The Dock Branch/Rendel St. is the same gradient but no stepping. Mmmm ? Billy's picture shows the original black glass has been replaced by cream glass in the Dock Branch but not yet in the main tunnel.

According to the Mersey Tunnel "Bible", there was also an air gap behind the glass plates "to allow variation of alignment to be overcome, and also give accomodation for lighting cables, condensation tubes etc...". This stand-off, if stepped wouldn't be easy to level off with a lick of paint Bert (imho)!! I specialise in painting bodge-ups, but even that's a bit much!

A bit of a puzzle really.

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#842889 - 11th Dec 2013 10:53am Re: Queensway tunnel [Re: ]
bert1 Offline

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Registered: 27th Nov 2008
Posts: 7864
Loc: tranmere
Chris's pic below, my horizontal levitation skills are not what they used to be wink

If it was a paint job, easily achievable in my view, regardless of how far the dado protruded out.
I don't know why anyone would want to alter a photo to get that effect. Perhaps and I throw this to the brains trust, did they think it would warn drivers they were approaching a bend for safer navigation.


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#842896 - 11th Dec 2013 11:24am Re: Queensway tunnel [Re: chriskay]
billy_anorak59 Offline

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Registered: 4th Feb 2009
Posts: 199
Loc: Cambridgeshire
Can't claim membership of the brains trust Bert (don't qualify), but I'll buy the sharp bend idea. Looking at the photo it would seem that the 'horizontal' line of the steps isn't, and they've painted a black triangle above the black glass dado direct onto the concrete wall?

Anyway, in case peeps don't know where the picture was taken - it's travelling towards Birkenhead from Liverpool and is shown in cutaway form as 'Birkenhead Junction Chamber' in this diagram:


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#842908 - 11th Dec 2013 12:50pm Re: Queensway tunnel [Re: chriskay]
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#842918 - 11th Dec 2013 1:32pm Re: Queensway tunnel [Re: billy_anorak59]
chriskay Offline
Forum Veteran

Registered: 25th Oct 2007
Posts: 4868
Loc: shropshire
Bert's idea is a possibility. I have a book, which has no publication data but has written on the flyleaf "9th. December 1956". I actually suspect that the book, which is about as comprehensive as "The Story of the Mersey Tunnel, officially named Queensway" (the official "Bible"), was published soon after the opening. This book, (which I bought a few years ago at a book fair at Woodside), unlike the "Bible", has a picture with the stepped dado. I think this is the picture Bert posted. The bend in question is the most severe in the tunnel, matched only by the Liverpool dock branch. Here are the pictures. The Liverpool dock branch doesn't have the stepped dado.
The picture of the dock branch must be Liverpool since the Rendel St. branch doesn't have a sharp left bend.

Incidentally, this book has a number of watercolours by Gordon Hemm which I'm posting separately.
All I can find about Gordon Hemm is that he was an architect, like Herbert Rowse who was the architect of the tunnel and were both graduates of Liverpool University.


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#842919 - 11th Dec 2013 1:36pm Re: Queensway tunnel [Re: chriskay]
chriskay Offline
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Registered: 25th Oct 2007
Posts: 4868
Loc: shropshire
Gordon Hemm's watercolours.


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#842923 - 11th Dec 2013 2:24pm Re: Queensway tunnel [Re: chriskay]
bert1 Offline

Wiki Veteran

Registered: 27th Nov 2008
Posts: 7864
Loc: tranmere
Nice Watercolours Chris.

In the 4th pic, I like the way the artist has captured the seagulls milling around an upturned Aero Bar. think

If it is a paint job and if that paint job is for driver awareness, approaching a bend, the same warning wouldn't be needed at the Liverpool Dock Exit. At that exit the bend or curve is immediate and not approached from a straight line or straight line speed.

Can someone please promote Billy in to the Brains Trust.
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#843478 - 13th Dec 2013 7:24pm Re: Queensway tunnel [Re: chriskay]
bri445 Offline

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Registered: 27th Apr 2009
Posts: 678
Loc: Isle of Wight
Might I suggest it's meant to indicate the road is going quite steeply uphill, as there is no reference to the horizontal in there. Vehicle engines were not that powerful in those days. Time to change down?

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