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1884 At this time, the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway (L&Y) had reached an all time low; train services were slow and often late, and stations, carriages, goods and locomotive depots were the worst in the country. At a meeting of the Directors on 19 March, their consulting engineer, John Ramsbottom, declared that repairs could no longer be carried out satisfactorily at their Miles Platting workshops near Manchester, and that it was essential that a new site be found for works as soon as possible.
The L&Y then purchased the Horwich Works near Bolton
John Ramsbottom had retired from the L&NWR due to ill health in 1871; he returned to work for the L&Y as consulting engineer in 1883.