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Re: Memories

Posted: Mon Jul 09, 2018 11:48 pm
by Mickey
The last couple of months that I was at Kings Cross I got up into No.2 link 'the Leeds gang' and had 3 or 4 return trips to Leeds with a regular driver that would have been around July/August of 1975 but in September of 1975 I left the railway altogether for just over 3 years and then came back on the job early in 1979 as a secondman again but this time at Stratford loco in East London but that only lasted until the end of the year before I 'jacked the loco in again' and went back in the box after originally starting as a 'box lad' at Welwyn Garden City box in July 1972 and going out as a signalman this time at the beginning of 1980 (which was subsequently re-titled a 'signaller' by Railtrack in the late 1990s) which I am still doing after 38 years.

Re: Memories

Posted: Tue Jul 10, 2018 11:57 am
by Marx
You would have obviously seen so many changes over the years Mickey....Were they better times in days of yore and pre Privatisation..?
Good to see the LNER name again...I wonder though how long it will stay in Government hands before being given to another hapless bunch of privateers with only their shareholders in mind?

Re: Memories

Posted: Tue Jul 10, 2018 2:12 pm
by harvester
What prompted the return to signalling Mickey ?

Re: Memories

Posted: Tue Jul 10, 2018 8:17 pm
by Mickey
Marx wrote:
Tue Jul 10, 2018 11:57 am
You would have obviously seen so many changes over the years Mickey....Were they better times in days of yore and pre Privatisation..?
Yes there has been many changes Marx from the B.R. days of 45-50 years ago. In a nutshell it's virtually a different job these days in many respects with the use of new technology being used more and more to the types of people who are now working on the railway these days compared to the railwaymen of old and that goes from the kind of people at the very top of management many of whom have no railway background in there past all the way down to the lowest groups of workers many of who haven't any interest or knowledge of railways and there history and with those kind of people the railway is just away of making money and paying off the rent or mortgage. Also compared to 45-50 years ago there are more women working on the railways these days a trend that started back in the late 1980s and carried on through the 1990s and into the present century up to the present day especially in the operating grades such as local managers, MOMs (Mobile Operating Manager) signallers & drivers and even in the old male dominated P.Way gangs as well I have seen the lone young woman mixed in with a gang of men. After the 1994 signalmen's strike there was a total re-organisation in working hours & conditions for signalmen plus pay was improved compared to what it had previously been prior to the strike but then shortly afterwards came the break up of British Rail and privatisation with Railtrack being formed in the late 1990s and then the railways went into Administration during the early 2000s then Railtrack became Network Rail and who knows we mite even go full circle back to British Rail in the next few years?.

Re: Memories

Posted: Tue Jul 10, 2018 8:55 pm
by Mickey
harvester wrote:
Tue Jul 10, 2018 2:12 pm
What prompted the return to signalling Mickey ?
Basically I was always interested in railway signalling from a young age from about 1967 onwards and I tried to learn a lot about it from books and also getting out and about around the railways and observing the workings of signal boxes and watching semaphore signals mainly in the London area and along the GN suburban route out of Kings Cross during the late 1960s & early 1970s.

During 1970 as a teenager I managed to 'bunk into' 5 different signal boxes which were-

1.Broad Street No.2 on the North London line in May 1970
2.Dalston Junction on the North London line in June 1970
3.Kensington South Main on the West London line in August 1970
4.Woolmer Green on the GN main line in August 1970
5.St Albans South box on the Midland main line on 3 separate occasions during Oct/Nov 1970

Re: Memories

Posted: Sun Jul 15, 2018 1:37 pm
by Marx
Hi Mickey, as I’ve suggested to Manna, I think you too should write a book...You’ both have vast amounts of material already...food for thought gents..?

Re: Memories

Posted: Sun Jul 15, 2018 5:24 pm
by Mickey
Marx wrote:
Sun Jul 15, 2018 1:37 pm
Hi Mickey, as I’ve suggested to Manna, I think you too should write a book...You’ both have vast amounts of material already...food for thought gents..?
I think I would like any book to be titled-

"50 years on the railway man and boy."

I would like the first line to be- "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times..."

That sounds like a good line to start it with. :wink:

Re: Memories

Posted: Mon Jul 16, 2018 9:02 am
by Marx
Good one Mickey why not...?...As the years roll by, the voices and names fade, but I find the faces stay quite sharp...do you guys..?

Re: Memories

Posted: Mon Jul 16, 2018 9:22 am
by Mickey
These days there are quite a number of books out there dealing with railwaymen's memories either on the footplate or in the box or umpteen other jobs on the railway although one thing that does appeal to me more than a book is a voice recording of memories put down on maybe a 70 minutes cd rom and maybe spread over a couple of discs but to be honest my time on the railway is probably not that much different to many who have got a lot of service in around the country. As for myself I have a fairly good memory at retaining memories going back many years.

Re: Memories

Posted: Mon Jul 16, 2018 9:25 pm
by Marx
Good idea Mickey..a CD Rom sounds ideal..do you go to any of the reunions..?..I’ve just a few memories ...but most of them good...I was in South Australia recently..and could of met up with Manna...however...I’ll be back there again...sooner than later...so here’s hoping...I must say Mickey, trying to work out the South Australian Railway signalling system, left me somewhat confused...Red lights over green lights...yellow lights under red lights..( from memory) ....Manna...help...please explain..cheers guys....

Re: Memories

Posted: Tue Jul 17, 2018 7:43 am
by Mickey
No I don't go to any reunions and in fact railways aren't a full time interest of mine these days but when I have access to a pc because I don't have one of my own I usually come on here.

Re: Memories

Posted: Tue Jul 17, 2018 8:52 pm
by manna
G'Day Gents

I've never looked into the workings of the railways over here, I am interested in the locomotives, who, designed them, where they were built etc, but as to signalling, totally baffled, 'tis witchcraft, I tell ye's'................ :lol:

manna

Re: Memories

Posted: Wed Jul 18, 2018 7:14 am
by Mickey
When it comes to railways I've only ever been interested in 'our' railways other countries railways hold zero appeal to me the only exceptions are maybe American railroad steam locos 1890s-1950s and in recent times watching dvds of German, Polish & Turkish steam locos during the 1960s-1980s.

The way that I look at it is Britain's railways especially between about 1890 and the 1970s have a rich history so why bother with other countries railways?.

Re: Memories

Posted: Wed Jul 18, 2018 7:25 am
by Marx
Personally, I lost interest in our railways when they were privatised....aye manner, their signalling is witchcraft ..

Re: Memories

Posted: Wed Jul 18, 2018 7:55 am
by Mickey
I can narrow it down even further with my interests in railways which are mainly from the era of the formation of BIG FOUR grouping of 1923 through to the nationalisation of the railways in 1948 and then the first 20 years of B.R.including the 1955 'modernisation plan' and the gradual 'running down of steam' from all the B.R.regions from the late 1950s and finishing in August 1968 although that is not to say that I am disinterested in anything railway related outside of the 1923-1968 time period.