Looking towards the Cromwell Curve


This composite photo shows the view west from the platforms at Gloucester Road, looking towards the erstwhile Cromwell Curve.

The left side shows the two westbound tracks. The one on the left is the District Line heading towards Earl's Court, while the one on the right is the Outer Rail of the Circle Line heading towards High Street Kensington. In the late evening District Line trains use the latter and then cross over to the left at the end of the tunnel; the rest of the time, trains on the two lines are kept separate. The two red lights are stop signals, while the yellow is a repeater for the Circle Line stop - it shows yellow when the stop signal is red, and green when it is green.

On the right hand side we see the eastbound District (left) and the Inner Rail of the Circle (right) converging on the approach to Gloucester Road. In the distance the Outer Rail can just be seen crossing the former and then disappearing behind the pillars.

The layout at Gloucester Road, and in particular the separate tracks for westbound trains, allows better operation of conflicting moves. If an Outer Rail Circle train needs to wait for an eastbound District Line train to cross the junction, it can occupy the platform without obstructing a following westbound District.

The white areas on the photo are the tunnel headwalls. The letters A and B indicate the importance of the OPO (One Person Operation) equipment in use. At a category B platform, the driver should be able to see the length of the platform by looking out of the cab window. Therefore if the OPO equipment fails, he can still determine whether it is safe to close the doors and start the train. A category A platform is any one that doesn't meet this test (and thus includes all platforms on the right as well as most curved platforms). If the OPO equipment fails, trains are only allowed to stop if there is a member of the station staff present to check the doors; otherwise trains must pass through without stopping.

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