What are/were these?

I sometimes take photos of things meaning to return to them later and find out what they are. Been looking through some old photos from recent years and found this, taken on the Fulford side of the riverbank, just before Millennium Bridge, heading out of town. I wondered what they were. This may be a stupid question, or a boring one, but thought I’d ask.

What are these (or what were these – are they still there – this photo was taken five years ago)? Photo can be enlarged.

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  1. Marian Hilditch

    They’re still there. I’ve always wondered. I think I read they were for pushing things down/up the barracks.

  2. Ian Fisher

    These old narrow gauge tracks, which had been hidden for years, were revealed during the work being done along the riverside at about the time that the Millennium Bridge was being built. In addition to the tracks themselves, there is clearly a former way through the wall beside the riverside path here, with two substantial brick pillars which presumably would have acted as gateposts. The wall is now extended to fill this gap. One of the series of plaques along both banks of the river (the one on the opposite bank to the tracks themselves), gives the following information – “Military stores were unloaded at an Ordnance Wharf, built in 1888, and taken to the army depot in Hospital Fields Road on a narrow gauge railway, a small section of which is still visible at the southern end of New Walk. Explosives were brought in the schooner ‘Princess’ known locally as the ‘Powder Boat’.”

  3. YorkStories

    Thanks, Marian and Ian. Really interesting that they were connected with the barracks. I’ll have to go down there again and look properly this time. I didn’t notice and read the plaque Ian – I do appreciate your recording of the text here. Also like the fact that the remains of an old gateway are still there too. Looking forward to having a better look, now I’m better informed!

  4. Mike Taylor

    Does anyone know the gauge of the track?

    • The track is 18 inch gauge. A fascinating relic; it’s just down the river from where I live.

  5. Thanks for the info above Ralph. More interesting bits of old iron just added: in Bootham Park and off Piccadilly.

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