Masterton - Poor Man's Outer Home

At the north end of Masterton is an interesting and inexpensive arrangement to allow trains to shunt outside the Down Home signal. I have labelled it a Poor Man's Outer Home.

Masterton North End

Masterton has just one through down train per day, and then only Monday to Friday. An inexpensive method of allowing shunting outside 2 Down Home signal was required. The solution was to install a Stop Board. I am not sure when it was installed as I cannot find a critical S & I. However, I suspect that it was when Track Warrant Control replaced Tablet working. The solution allowed the removal of the two-position Down Distant and eliminated the maintenance of its cabling.

Here is the solution (my interpretation):

  • Distant...Station Warning Board
  • Outer Home...Stop Board
  • Shunting Limit...TWC Begins Board
  • Home Signal...2 Down Home

Featherston. Compare the Masterton arrangement with the more conventional configuration at the north end of Featherston. Here the TWC Begins board is located next to an approach controlled Outer Home signal. Between the Outer Home and the Home is a Shunting Limit board.

Approaching Masterton From The North

The following boards and signals are seen by a down train approaching Masterton from the north.

The Masterton Down Station Warning Board. There should be a sign with the word Masterton below the main board but it seems to have been vandalised. Does this board perform the function of a Distant signal? Bruce Scott Photo

The All Trains Stop Board. Is this a Poor Man's Outer Home? The Monday to Friday down freight can pass this board only on the authority of Train Control. Bruce Scott Photo

The Track Warrant Control Begins and Ends boards. Up trains cannot pass this point without a Track Warrant. Do these boards act as a Shunting Limit board? Bruce Scott Photo

Two position signal 2 Down Home. This signal is usually kept at Stop and the daily (Monday to Friday) freight is authorised to pass it at Stop by Train Control. If the down freight is running late and it conflicts with other trains at Masterton then the signal will be cleared when the main is clear for the freight to proceed.Bruce Scott Photo

Last Updated: Saturday, December 31, 2005

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