Signalling is important for safe operation on any railway with more than one train in use, and the LTMR is no exception.
The railway formerly used colour-light signals, which were operated in accordance with London Underground practice but currently operates on the ‘token’ method of signalling while the entire signalling system is redesigned for the 21st century. Formerly, the line was signalled from a signal cabin housing a signalling frame taken from Holborn station.
The earlier signals were made using repeaters recovered from full-size signalboxes, with hoods made out of plastic tube. The signals were controlled by a single operator using a switch panel at the north end of Depot Approach station, but this control has now passed to the levers in our signal cabin (see below).
Shunt signals were made with signalbox track circuit repeaters.
Currently, There is two tokens used as a method of signalling while the entire system is upgraded, and the driver of a train needs to possess it before being allowed to enter the single line from either Depot Approach, Wesley’s Halt or the locomotive servicing siding.
At present, all of the loop points are spring-operated, with the points to sidings operated by a motor. The motor was made especially for the railway, using a car window-winder motor, and has a spring override (so that in an emergency the points can be trailed in the wrong direction) and separate detector switches for indication and interlocking purposes.
The long term intention is for the railway to be fully signalled once again, with the prospect of being able to demonstrate London Undergrounds ATO (automatic train operation) as well.
As of July 2019 the LTMR currently has a temporary automatic signalling system installed. This system uses a combination of track circuits and axle counters to control access to the single line sections. We hope to see improvements to the system over the coming months.
This signalling project is ongoing.