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SideTracked - Romiley Multi-Cache

Hidden : 05/24/2017
1.5 out of 5
1.5 out of 5

Size: Size:   small (small)

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Geocache Description:

About SideTracked Caches

This cache belongs to the SideTracked series. It is not designed to take you to a magical place with a breathtaking view. It is a distraction for the weary traveller, but anyone else can go and find it too. More information can be found at the SideTracked Website.

About Romiley Station

Romiley station was built by the Manchester, Sheffield and Lincolnshire Railway and opened as part of the first stage of their new line from Manchester to New Mills. The station buildings front the main street though Romiley but are built upwards to platforms extending over a bridge over the road. Pedestrian access to the booking hall and the Manchester platform is via a spiral staircase housed in an octagonal tower which once had a glass-roofed dome. Access to platform 2, for trains travelling south, can be reached through the underpass from the main station building or directly through a gate from the car park.

Romiley Station today

Romiley is a busy commuter station and enjoys over 6 trains an hour scheduled for Manchester's Piccadilly station at peak times. One of the reasons for this frequent service is that immediately beyond Romiley away from Manchester, the railway line splits to destinations such as Rose Hill, Marple, New Mills and Sheffield and so all Manchester-bound services from these places have to pass through Romiley.

Romiley Station History

The reasons behind this date back to the times of "railway mania" in the 1840s. In 1846 a fledgling railway company called the Sheffield, Ashton-under-Lyne and Manchester Railway was granted by an act of parliament to build a line from an existing railway line at Hyde, south through Romiley and Marple to Whaley Bridge, with a branch to Hayfield. The company's eventual aim was to reach Buxton and provide an outlet to the Midlands for Manchester traffic; the company's directors had lofty ambitions. During the next 18 months they struck deals and merged with various canal companies and tramways in the area as well as a number of railways on the east side of the Pennines to become the Manchester, Sheffield and Lincolnshire Railway.

The Manchester, Sheffield and Lincolnshire Railway coat of arms

However, the mania of these early acquisitions was followed by a slump and the finances of the MS&LR ran out. In November 1848 work on the new line was stopped and it took another 15 years of negotiations and further parliamentary acts before the company was able to open even the first part of the line, just as far as Marple. This included the station at Romiley, so when it first opened passengers could only board trains to Manchester via Hyde. The MS&LR had to agree a joint venture with one of its rivals, the Midland Railway, to build a second, shorter route from Romiley to Manchester via Reddish. This line opened in 1875 and is still in use today.

Before this date another conglomerate of railway companies opened a branch from Romiley to Stockport Tiviot Dale station and onwards to Northenden and Manchester Central Station. Manchester Central is now an exhibition centre but when the line opened in 1869 it carried through trains from Manchester to Derby and London and of course Romiley had a direct rail link to Stockport, Didsbury and Chorlton. Furthermore, in 1871 the Macclesfield, Bollington and Marple Railway opened a new line to Macclesfield, which left the older line at Marple Wharf Junction and allowed passengers to travel from Romiley to Macclesfield and Stoke-on-Trent. Both of these lines, to Stockport and Macclesfield, were included in the now infamous "Beeching Report" and had closed by 1970, with only a short branch line to Rose Hill gaining a eleventh-hour stay of execution.

Locomotive 4F number 44124 at Romiley recorded by Ray Wood in the days of steam

How to find this cache

The final location of this multi-cache can be calculated after visiting the waypoint at the listed coordinates outside the station's main entrance on Stockport Road. You can see a commemorative plaque on the wall of the building, look for the year Romiley station officially opened and record this as ABCD.

Next, look for the number of years that the plaque commemorates has passed since and record this number as EFG.

Now you can calculate the final coordinates of this multi-cache by using the following formula:

N53° D (F−A) ● (D+F) (B+E) G   W002° 0 F ● D A (C÷D)

The cache is a disguised container hidden a short walk from the station near another railway-related feature of the area. Once you arrive at the final coordinates, please be careful with small children as there is no footpath for a short distance. Please also be aware that although the area is hidden from the view of nearby houses, the location is such that cars and pedestrians can appear seemingly out of nowhere so please be discreet and keep a good lookout. Although the cache container is home made it is fairly robust so cannot easily be broken, but it is irreplaceable and so we are reliant on all geocachers to replace it correctly so that it remains disguised and safe, thank you.

We do of course welcome logs highlighting any issues that detract from the quality of the cache or any suggestions you have to improve it.  Good luck everyone!

Image of 4F 44124 copyright Alastair Wood
Railways of Marple and District From 1794, Warwick R. Burton
The Light Rail Transit Association

Additional Hints (Decrypt)

Whfg nabgure Cvax Syblq fbat

Decryption Key


(letter above equals below, and vice versa)