In 2005 semaphore signalling was clinging on along the Medway Valley line. 508202 enters Wateringbury on a damp and gloomy morning working 2T23 1003 Paddock Wood to Strood. The platforms here are staggered with the down platform behind me. The goods shed is no longer in rail use.
Wateringbury is the location for class 508 EMU 508201 working 2T32 1004 off Stroud to Paddock Wood passing the 1893 South Eastern Railway built Saxby and Farmer type 12 signalbox with the Up starter on a rail made signal post.
508201 is seen again as it slips away from the down platform at East Farleigh with a train from Paddock Wood to Strood, 2T37, 1101 off. The signalbox is almost tucked away out of sight on the end of the up platform.
An up working formed of 508202 crosses the level crossing past the short up starter heading for Paddock Wood having left Strood at 1100, 2T36.
Moving north to Aylesford and 508201 again is recorded. This time it passes the tall up starter with a distant arm too. The train is 2T40, 1200 Strood to Paddock Wood.
Aylesford up starter and tall lattice post is seen from the footbridge as 508211 passes and enters the next section, as it did the distant arm fell on. The train is 2T42 1230 Strood to Maidstone West. At the end of the down platform is the 1921 built signalbox.
Aylesford also has staggered platforms and 508211 has the road away from the down platform with 2T43 1258 Maidstone West to Strood. The down starter and distant are mounted on a gantry.
Moving onto the next station and New Hythe stands in the middle of two heavy industrial sites. 508201 aproaches the station with 2T45 1301 Paddock Wood to Strood. The freight siding looks as if nothing has gone down for a while.
Having run the length of the platform, which are not staggered, 508201 leaves and passes the empty, rebuilt signalbox. The over bridge has replaced the level crossing here.
In the up direction 508211 runs between the up starter and the down home, both are pulled of as the 'box is switched out. The working is 2T46 1330 Strood to Maidstone West.
The next station north is the delightfully named Snodland. 508211 runs in beside the low signalbox at the level crossing with 2T47 1258 Maidstone West to Strood shuttle. The former South Eastern Railway signalbox is of 1870s vintage and was taken out of use on 23rd June 2013.
Still at Snodland and 508211 returns heading for Maidstone West running as 2T50 1430 off. The down starter stands on a ganrty bracket that retains the post for the signal giving access into the now removed goods yard.
Turning round for the going away shot of 508211 and the tall up starter just in front of the footbridge.
The final station with semaphore signals is Cuxton. 508202 heads away south for Paddock Wood passing the small former South Eastern Railway signalbox and the shortened arm of the down starter. This is because of the close proximetry of the footbridge to the signal. The train is 2T52 1500 Strood to Paddock Wood. Cuxton is probably the best remaining example of the characteristic SER design.
In the up direction is 508211 again with 2T51 1458 Maidstone West to Strood. The tall down home is on a rail built post and the down distant is barely visible on a short post.
Turning round for the going away shot and 508211 passes the down starter which also has a distant arm for the next signal. Also on the gantry is a post for access to the down yard, now long gone. Beyond can be seen the CTLR's Medway Viaduct.