First part of your question, the answer is, its been a good few years, i'd say 10, as for its location, if you use a ONE or DLR train from Stratford towards london you pass over the motorway just after pudding mill lane, on the north side of the line immediatly beside the motorway, and beside the GEML, there is a tall thin structure, this is the old ford fan shaft, also located here, just to confuse everyone is Bow Sub Station !
Have a look next time your passing and see if you spot it
I was down there about 2 years ago this December, bloody horrid place and comes up at street level in a not nice area (my opinion). It was covered for a long time in Scaffold and Cladding, why I don't know, then the Gypos moved along aside it.
Post by Christopher J on Sept 6, 2005 20:02:26 GMT
Because Stratford - Mile End is quite a long section of track, if a Train needs to be de-trained in between the two stations it would be quite a walk to the next station, as far as I'm aware at the present it is used to evacuate Trains if they're stuck in between Stratford/Mile End.
Its presence can be noticed if you know where it is and what to look out for, if you're travelling between Stratford/Mile End, you will notice a white ring painted around the tunnel wall at one point, this indicates the fan shafts location, there is large a change of air pressure as you pass the shaft itself. (and, if you really do keep your eyes peeled, you can notice the lights in the shaft as you go past it, but only for a spilt second if the Train you are travelling on is going at full line speed!)
Signature gone for refurbishment at Bombardier, Wakefield.
I've always assumed that its principle purpose was as a ventilation shaft, hence the name 'Old Ford Fan Shaft'. The fact it can used as emergency access to and from the line is a bonus. I should imagine it was probably also one of the access shafts during the construction of the line.