Although only a small cabin set on a single, island platform station set amongst a multitude of trees, Parkerville served a vital link in the chain of cabins along the old Eastern Railway line through the Darling Ranges of Western Australia. The trains worked by the Signalmen here, were destined for a large variety of stations and sidings throughout the W. A. G. R. network including the Great Southern Railway and Eastern Goldfields Railway.
Taken from a W. A. G. R. photo, the exterior view seen above shows the small cluster of buildings situated on the very isolated island platform. These days, the small tree (seen on the right in the photo) is still in position on what remains of the platform. A slight depression indicates the signal cabin's former location - the locking pit beneath the cabin having been filled in. These days, the whole area through the former Parkerville station site is thickly overgrown with young trees. Soon the only evidence of the station's existence at all will be the long gravel mound of the platform and the occasional signalling artefact like signal and relay box bases and concrete cable trunking.
Point Indicators were first fixed at Parkerville prior to 1898. The points and signals at this station were interlocked on 20th June 1899. Signals at that time were initially of the lower quadrant type, and these lasted until replaced on the 3rd of January 1926, with Automatic signalling.
This system saw the introduction of the 3-position upper quadrant signals from the General Railway Signal Company of the U. S. A.
Parkerville once had a yard with three roads. The exit from these roads was controlled by upper quadrant Dwarf signals - essentially the same signal motor, but mounted at ground level and working a large White Disc with representative signal arm, as can be seen in the above photo.
The dramatic silhouette seen in the slide show above of a 3 position upper quadrant signal, as used on the Eastern Railway was taken be Ric. Edwards. There are many of these signal arms, and the electric motors that drove them, still in existence, but sadly, the posts and other parts did not fare nearly so well. Of note is the three-quarter kidney-shaped shield to the right of the post, which prevented stray light from showing through the GREEN or YELLOW lenses when the signal was displaying RED. The deep platform at the top of the ladder was neccessary to enable work on the motor. One wonders what ever became of all the finials from these signals?
Adjacent stations and cabins along the line over the years were - on the east side: Mount Helena (formerly named Lion Mill) and Chidlow. On the west side was: Tunnel Junction; Swan View and Bellevue Junction.
With the diversion of rail traffic to the Avon Valley Route, the record card shows that on the 13th of February 1966 the station was closed and deleted. The card file was additionally endorsed that all material was to be removed.
The Chief Civil Engineer's Plan No. 49280 is the Diagram of Signalling for Parkerville in 1959. It was published in Weekly Notice 34 of 1959. Of interest, is the use of an ordinary two-position shunt signal - No. 7 for the 'Shunt Siding' (runaway road) alongside a 3 position counterpart for movements out of the sidings (yard) to the 'Up Main' (to Perth). Note: The use of Absolute Automatic Signals, and that all signals are in their 'normal' position as required by the 1940 Book of Rules.
Information researched and interpreted by Chris. J. E. French of SignallingWA
Any additional information on this signal cabin would be most welcome - please use the e-mail form provided on this page.
Photographs © by Chris. J. E. French, Ric. Edwards and J. Moir and Diagram of Signalling and Photograph © by W. A. G. R.
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PARKERVILLE (2) Employees
This list may not be complete and does not yet include employees who worked here without being appointed