Derwent Crossing in May 2009 looking west, now considerably modernised and hard to tell it was a Forge Valley Railway crossing keepers house. The railway crossed the road to the left of the building in this view.

Derwent Crossing

Derwent Crossing was situated in the village of East Ayton on Back Lane, now called Carr Lane, shortly after the railway had crossed over the River Derwent. The gates were reputed to be the longest on the line, due to the angle of the road.

Next to the crossing keepers house was a small six lever cabin described as a "gate box" which had the enamel sign 'Derwent' on the front.

The cabin was used as a potting shed after closure but has now vanished, apparently for a while used at a racecourse to take bets. To this day, there is a well in the yard, probably built by the railway.


Mr John Porteous was a gate keeper at Derwent Crossing in 1891.


In 1901 Mr Thomas Dunning was a gatekeeper and also recorded as a porter, living at "East Ayton Gatehouse".


At "East Ayton Gatehouse" in 1911, Mr William Wales was a gateman with his wife Elizabeth acting as his relief.


in 1921 Mr William Herbert Liggins was gateman and his wife Mrs Sophia Beatrice Liggins was gatewoman at Derwent Crossing.


Ethel Hart was born at Derwent Crossing in 1928. Her mother, Kathleen Hart was the crossing keeper from May 1928 until closure. Her father Charles Hart, was a platelayer and worked on the line from the early 1920's also until closure. Before Charles moved to the crossing keepers house, he lived in East Ayton village. The Hart family bought the gatehouse after closure, living there until 1972.