Notes: Bolton Deansgate Goods station was located at the north end of a ½-mile branch that connected it to the Bolton & Leigh Railway (B&L) at Crook Street. The B&L had been authorised on 31 March 1825 to build an 8-mile line between Bolton and Leigh. They opened the first section between Bolton and Chequerbent for goods services only on 28 August 1828. The line had been engineered by George Stephenson and it was one of his locomotives, the Lancashire Witch that made the inaugural run. The section of line from Chequerbent to Leigh opened in March 1830. At Leigh the line connected to the Leeds & Liverpool canal (the original purpose having been to connect Bolton to the canal). A further 2½ miles of line, between Leigh and Kenyon Junction, was authorised on 14 May 1829 and was built by the Kenyon & Leigh Junction Railway (K&LJR). This section of line provided a link to the Liverpool & Manchester Railway (L&M) and It opened to goods on 3 January 1831.
Bolton Deansgate was located on the south side of its namesake just to the west of the town’s commercial district. The station consisted of a covered warehouse that fronted onto Deansgate.
The Deansgate branch included sections of street running and it crossed the busy thoroughfares of Crook Street and Great Moor Street.
On 8 August 1845 the B&L was merged into the Grand Junction Railway (as were the L&M and the K&LJR). A year later, on 16 July 1846 the GJR merged with the London & Birmingham Railway to form the London & North Western Railway (LNWR).
By the 1840s an engineering works had become established just south of Deansgate Goods station. It had connections to the branch and in 1854 when under the ownership of Rothwell & Co the works built broad gauge locomotives for the Bristol & Exeter Railway. The works went on to become the Bolton Iron & Steel Co.
In 1880 the station was enlarged and new warehouse facilities were built.
The 1904 Handbook of Stations showed that Bolton Deansgate was able to handle general goods, furniture vans and livestock. The private siding of the Bolton Iron & Steel Company was also listed.
In 1906 the Bolton Iron & Steel Company was taken over by Henry Bessemer & Co Ltd.
On 1 January 1923 Bolton Deansgate Goods station became part of the London Midland & Scottish Railway (LMS).
The Henry Bessemer & Company Ltd works closed in 1926. This reduced the amount of traffic on the branch which, owing to its street running, was difficult to work. By that time trains were worked onto the branch between 8.00 and 8.30am which caused disruption on Crook Street and Great Moor Street (on the latter tram services were held up). The LMS decided to close Deansgate Goods station and the branch that served it with effect from 25 February 1930.
The branch was lifted after closure and much of its course was lost under subsequent redevelopments.
The goods station building found alternative uses and survived until 1965 when it was demolished.
In 2016 the station site was occupied by a court building and public open space. A small section of the station’s west side wall could still be seen.
Map by Alan Young
- A Lancashire Triangle Part 2 - D J Sweeney, Triangle Publishing 1997.
- A Regional History of the Railways of Great Britain - Volume 10 The North West - Geoffrey O Holt, David & Charles 1986.
- Forgotten Railways - North West England - John Marshall, David & Charles 1981.
See also: Bolton Crook Street Goods and Bolton Great Moor Street
To see the other
stations on the Bolton Great Moor Street - Kenyon Junction line
click on the station name: Kenyon
Junction, Pennington, West Leigh, Atherleigh, Atherton Bag Lane, Chequerbent 1st, Chequerbent 2nd,
Daubhill 1st & Rumworth