(All photos © Sparhawk)
Opened on 1st June 1855 as part of Brunel's broad gauge Hereford Ross & Gloucester Railway, the line through Ballingham Tunnel was converted to standard gauge in 1869, a process that took just five days.
At 1208 yards, the structure is the region's longest and this section of line reaches its summit close to the middle. The masonry walls have been patch-repaired with brick and strengthening rings inserted within the original lining at the northern end.
Its condition today is generally sound though water penetration is clearly a problem at times. Calcite deposits have formed on both the walls and floor. In a few places, material has burst through from behind the lining.
The tunnel welcomed its last steaming visitor on 2nd November 1964.
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