Thornton Viaduct


The pictures show a disused railway viaduct located in Thornton, near Bradford, birth place of the Brontes. It is a truly magnificent structure which is Grade II listed and crosses Pinch Beck Valley. It has 20 arches and is, I understand, 270m long. The viaduct is not in fact straight but has a very satisfying sinuous curve which once allowed easy access to Thornton Station, which no longer exists. The line of which it formed a part extended from the famous triangular station at Queensbury to Keighley via Denholme, Wilsden, Cullingworth and Ingrow. This relatively short line, less than 10 miles in length, included another amazing viaduct just north of Wilsden at Hewenden, and two tunnels. One can only marvel at the confidence of Victorian railway engineers. Rail passengers first arrived at Thornton in the late 1870s but were not carried on this line after the mid-1950s. The line was then used for goods trains for another decade before the tracks were finally pulled up. Today you can walk quite safely across the viaduct which has been incorporated into an urban foot path.

Thornton viaduct 017 Thornton viaduct 020


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