Neasden 34E

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enterprise
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Neasden 34E

Post by enterprise » Mon Apr 15, 2013 5:48 pm

All this talk about "Glamour places" like KX !!! Anyone out there ever worked at 34E neasden? I was there as fireman from '52 to '58. I finished up in No. 3 link local trains.
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manna
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Re: Neasden 34E

Post by manna » Mon Apr 15, 2013 8:15 pm

G'Day Gents

Sorry, but I know very little about Neasden, wasn't a depot you hear much about, bit like Cambridge or Colchester, they were there, but that was that, but I would like to be enlightened :D

manna
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Re: Neasden 34E

Post by 60129 GUY MANNERING » Mon Apr 15, 2013 10:32 pm

enterprise wrote:All this talk about "Glamour places" like KX !!! Anyone out there ever worked at 34E neasden? I was there as fireman from '52 to '58. I finished up in No. 3 link local trains.
Enterprise
My Father Ted Betts worked there for the whole of that period and I remember many of the drivers, Bert & Brian Axtell, Tom Butcher, Bert Parker, Bill Archer, George Reynolds, Bill Conroy, Mr Jaycock, Bob Ford, Mr Fisher.
I also remember some of the other grades, such as the Blacksmith Jack Lock, Fitter Bill Stanton, Ted Seymore, Ted Milchrist, Ernie Reid, Snyder who kept pigs on his allotment nearby.
At about that time Eric Beaver was the Shedmaster and he was one my Fathers Officers in the Railway Operating Department of the Royal Engineers during the Second World war. He wrote two books, "Steam was my Calling" and the other title escapes me at the moment.
Regards, Derek.

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Re: Neasden 34E

Post by enterprise » Tue Apr 16, 2013 8:08 pm

hello Derek,
Yes the names you mention ring a bell. I fired to most of the drivers you listed when I was a passed cleaner in the relief link.
I certainly remember Tom Butcher. Amongst the drivers you listed you said George Reynolds. Did you mean Bill Reynolds? Bill was a bit of a comedian,and I'm told he was very good on the banjo. Often referred to as banjo Bill.When I was made fireman my first regular driver was Vic Myers, he insisted the job was done properly and you learned a lot with him. Another driver I remember well was Gerry Ross, we did a week together on the Bletchly parcels with a B1. Gerry had a brother in the top link, A E Ross. I think the shed Master was Mr Robinson and the man in charge of the cleaners was a Mr Corp. Its all coming back even after 60 years but I need a memory jog. If you remember any more names I'd be happy to hear them.
Best Wishes
Den (Enterprise)

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Re: Neasden 34E

Post by David Bigcheeseplant » Tue Apr 16, 2013 8:33 pm

My Dad Robin Lane was a passed fireman based at Aylesbury but went to Neasden I will ask him at the weekend what he knows.
David

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Re: Neasden 34E

Post by 60129 GUY MANNERING » Tue Apr 16, 2013 10:19 pm

Hello Den,

your spot on, it was Bill Reynolds and I remember my Grandfather Joe Hill (Top Link Driver in the 40's & early fifties) referring to "Banjo Reynolds". His Garden in Woodhayes Road backed onto my Grandfathers in Gresham Road both in the Old Great Central built village. My word how 60 years have changed that place and not for the better.
Mr Reynolds lived opposite Archie Moore who was the Royal Train driver on the Great Central and my Grandfather was his deputy.
I remember the name of Mr Robinson being mentioned as the "Guvner" so Shedmaster he would have been. Tom Butcher was a very keen gardener and once saw my Dad cutting the front hedge, your not cutting that very level said Tom. My Dad said it will do me and Tom Butcher said give me those shears and proceeded to cut the hedge. To be honest he made a very good job of it and my Dad just stood and watched. I was about 10 years old in 1956 and on our 6 weeks Summer holidays from school we were into building bikes with the American back pedal brakes. We got the parts from the scrap yard near the stables on Neasden Lane. The man who ran it used to let us have the bike bits for nothing as he said it would keep us out of trouble and stop us going back in the evening when there was only the guard dog there. One day I was going full speed down Gresham Road when my brake failed and I hit the kerb, flew over the handle bars and the hedge in front of Tom Butchers allotment and through the roof of his glasshouse. I broke my arm and had several lacerations from the glass, but flattened his Tomato Plants. I think it would be fair to say he was furious with me at the time and for a long time after. I did try to apologise to him, but it was not enough for Tom. They were good days for me as a kid. I do however remember having it brought home to me how dangerous the railway could be when a young West Indian Fireman lost half of his foot under the wheels of a Tank Loco one weekend afternoon. I had walked over with our Dog to meet my Father at the end of his shift and there were Railway Policemen about and they wanted to know why I was trespassing. They were OK about me meeting my Father, but suggested firmly that I should not go up near the incident for obvious reasons.

Regards, Derek.

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Re: Neasden 34E

Post by enterprise » Wed Apr 17, 2013 4:51 pm

hello Derek
Your stories about Tom Butcher really struck a chord, he was a good mate on the footplate though. Our line used to run underground from Marylebone and then come up at Finchley road where we used to run alongside the Met. line through Neasden. If you were going to Aylesbury you would chase them all the way to Harrow on the Hill. We usually passed them just before Wembley Park Station. I can see Tom now, head stuck out of the cab window, pipe clenched between his teeth, and he practicaly pushing the L1 along! My regular mate on local trains was George Jones I believe he came to us from KX where he fired in the top link. Another good mate who loved to have a go on the shovel. He often split the shift with you, I think just to demonstrate how good he was on the shovel. And boy, he was good! Like most drivers he could do with one shovel full what I did with four! Wonderful memories!
Best wishes
den (enterprise)

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Re: Neasden 34E

Post by alang » Mon Apr 22, 2013 7:35 pm

Really interested to read of the memories that some of you have regarding Neasden sheds. I've been lucky enough to have long email conversations with Den (Enterprise) over the past couple of years as he was at Neasden at the same time as my late father and remebered working with him! I wonder if anyone else remebers George Goodchild? He died in service in 1957 whilst a driver at Neasden. We lived in Normansmead, just off Brentfield Road and I went to Bridge Road Primary School. I have vivid memories of walking across the "feeder" and then the allotments to meet my Dad in the sheds. I would have been around 7 or 8 at the time! My family are not in a position to be able to offer much in the way of information regarding my fathers work history so any recollections anyone may have would be very gratefully received.
Dig deep in the memory banks!!!!
Thanks

Alan

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Re: Neasden 34E

Post by 60129 GUY MANNERING » Sat May 11, 2013 2:28 pm

Alan,
I remember the name Alan Goodchild from my days at Bridge Road School where Miss Woods was Headmisstress and Ron Singer, Mrs Gale , The Czechoslovakian Lady whose name I still can't spell ( Mrs Shykosky or similar) , Miss Downer and Miss Thomas who was a "Cracker". When I worked for Bert Skinner in Taylors Lane, Normansmead was on my morning paper round in the late 1950's early 1960's. From around your area I remember Billy Faulkner,Dave & Barry Simmonds, Alan Busby ?? who was in my class as was Keith Overton and I also remember his younger brother Malcolm.
Of course Leslie Hornsby (Twiggy) lived in St Raphaels Way, where I also deliverd newspapers.Then from 1965 when I got a car, I used the Texaco garage in Brentfield Road.
I have been back several times in the last two decades and must confess, I don't really enjoy the area of late. This may be because where we live in Lincolnshire is very quite and as we get older (66) I find the bustle of London and its traffic somewhat tiresome.I am confident still in the London traffic because I grew up with it and in fact worked in the area around Soho as a Service Engineer for about 4 years and had been a Rep for two decades driving 70k miles per year on average until just before I retired, so its not any fear of it.
It's just a pain and doing it daily NOW would drive me to drink at the very least.
All the best Alan,
Kind Regards,Derek Betts.

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Re: Neasden 34E

Post by alang » Mon May 13, 2013 9:16 pm

Hello Derek! So pleased that you replied to my post, I'm amazed at your memory! (you and I are the same age). The teachers names you mentioned really made me think as I remebered most of them. My strongest memories of Bridge Road school are as part of the football team! Do you remeber the yellow and brown squared shirts? Were you into football and did you play for the school? You recalled Dave and Barry Simmonds and Dave was a close friend of mine as our gardens backed on to each other! Just a leap over the fence to play cowboys or whatever. It's incredible to think that we probaly were in Neasden loco sheds together at some stage as I regulary walked over there to see my dad. Have you ever done any research on the sheds or the locos based there? I keep promising to try and do some detailed research as I would really like to try and piece together some work history for my father but I always seem to have something more pressing to do! It's a long time since I've been back to the Normansmead area but I know it's not like it used to be up there now. Do you have contact with anybody else who had relations that worked at Neasden? We moved away when my father died in 1957, back to Aylesbury which was my mother's home. Of course, my father would have worked out through Aylesbury on many occasions.
Sorry to bombard you with the questions! Any further recollections you have would be gratefully received!
Thanks and kind regards
Alan

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Re: Neasden 34E

Post by kudu » Tue May 14, 2013 6:41 pm

manna wrote:Sorry, but I know very little about Neasden, wasn't a depot you hear much about, bit like Cambridge or Colchester, they were there, but that was that, but I would like to be enlightened :D
Not sure what sort of thing you want to know, but I can say as a shed it followed the standard GC pattern with no unusual features I am aware of. But from the enthusiast's point of view it was distinctive, thanks to the proximity of Wembley Stadium. This bought various exotic types to the shed, the year's highlight being the Rugby League Final, which guaranteed B1s and maybe the odd B16 from remote NER sheds. You could also see Schools or West Countries occasionally.

The shed also saw a major change in its allocation over quite a short period when its L1s were replaced by LMS 2-6-4 tanks. I believe the B1s also disappeared at the same time as Black Fives took over.

Apart from those special Saturday afternoons I used to visit the shed on some Sundays, if I had the energy to walk over there after going round Willesden and Old Oak, which were much nearer my house. Today this walk would take me past Neasden Temple, the extraordinary Hindu building on Brentfield Road opened in 1995. Well worth a look if you're ever in the area.

It's been interesting to hear from people who worked there or had family members who did.

Kudu

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manna
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Re: Neasden 34E

Post by manna » Tue May 14, 2013 10:03 pm

G'Day Gents

I'm easy, everything and anything :D You did make an interesting point, I often wondered why there was a sudden influx of Neasden engines at KX, I forgot about the LMS poaching ever more territory from the other Regions, there should have been an exchange, the Eastern region, should have got the ex Midland Railway :twisted: :twisted:

A3's from St Pancras :lol:

manna
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Re: Neasden 34E

Post by 60129 GUY MANNERING » Wed May 15, 2013 10:02 am

Manna,

Thanks for putting up with the Old School quite literally. Yes indeed my friend and in fact they got all of the
new BR Standard Class 5MT,s from Neasden including 73156, 73157, 73158 & 73159.
Although when it came to scrounging a Class 5 Stanier 4-6-0 (44911) that came from Chester 6A for use testing the ASW or ATW. I know you or 52D will put me right on that.

Kind Regards, Derek.

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Re: Neasden 34E

Post by 60129 GUY MANNERING » Wed May 15, 2013 10:21 am

Alan,

You won’t believe this,but I assure you its true.We moved to Stoke Mandeville Aylesbury border in 1977 and stayed there until 2000. We lived in Braddenham Walk, off Kynaston Avenue which is opposite the Ambulance station. My postcode was HP21 9BY ??.
Ah the quartered Football shirt in Yellow & Brown,I remember it well,but alas don’t remember getting picked,although was always on the fringes of the team, much better at cricket ,but thats another story. Although whilst I remember in about 1956 the London Evening Star newspaper (before its demise) used to award a cricket bat to the outstanding performance in a schools cricket match held in the London area.Bridge Road school had the privelige of being the only school to ever have two lads nominated and receive a bat from the same game. Jimmy Michelin and Dave Bassett (I think ) were both presented with a bat for scoring a century apiece in an opening double century partnership that saw both lads not out when Ron Singer (Teacher) declared the innings closed.He was a very proud man that day I can tell you.They were a year above me but I was the scorer that day.
I was a late developer at football, basically because of my size (Weight), although Rons 642 decibel voice penetrating into my right ear for half of a match never helped.He scared the C *** out of me at 11 years of age.I met him again in about 1971 at his home near Gladstone Park and he was a lovely man, my wife was in his class and adorded him.
He hosted a party after Twiggy had been on "This is Your Life" and many of her classmates from Bridge Road had appeared on the programme,including SWMBO. I gave Ron a good laugh telling him how much he scared me, he replied “I bet I don’t scare you now” and I said “No,but I still respect you”. Times were so different then.
Footy now, I really wanted to play in goal,but Tony Street was a good keeper and if he was missing John Parsons or Derek Fellowes were always available.Peter Sparey was a good player and one hell of a fighter as an 11 year old,but he was a super mate and never ever bullied anyone.In fact he would often get into scraps with older boys who picked on the Bridge Road lads.
As "Kudu" mentions the Hindu Temple in Brentfield Road is a true work of Art, well worth seeing if anyone is in North West London.However it cause severe traffic and parking congestion and is non too popular with local residents, for obvious reasons.


Now as the rest have probably nodded off :roll: lets get back to 34E or 14D as it became on the 1st January 1958. The allocation of BR Eastern Region stock was moved away to be replaced by Stanier 4MT Tank engines and Black Fives..

The allocation on the 1st January 1959 included a 14xx 1473 for the Chesham Shuttle I presume.

Class 2. Ivatt 2-6-2 Tanks :-
41270, 41272, 41284 & 41329.

Class 4. Fairburn,Fowler & Stanier 2-6-4 Tanks :-
42157, 42222, 42225, 42230 42231, 42232, 42248, 42249, 42250, 42251, 42252, 42253, 42256, 42279, 42281, 42282, 42283, 42284, 42291, 42437, 42450, 42453, 42556, 42568, 42588, 42595, 42618 & 42629.

Class 5 Stanier 4-6-0’s :-

44691, 44819, 44830, 44847, 45006, 45215, 45260 & 45516.

These were capably assisted by B1 Class 4-6-0’s :-

61077, 61116, 61136, 61187 & 61206.

Class N5 0-6-2 Tanks. :-

69257, 69319, 69341.

And Twenty of the new BR Standards.
.
Class 4MT 2-6-4 Tanks. :-

Class 4MT 2-6-0’s :-

76035, 76036, 76037, 76038, 76039, 76040, 76041, 76042, 76043 & 76044,


80059, 80083, 80137,80138, 80139, 80140, 80141, 80142, 80143 & 80144.

I hope that this is of interest to some of the members,but if not I apologise for going on a bit :cry: . However if anyone is interested I have details of stock at 34E in 1950. By the way Peterborough New England shed was designated 35A at this time until it became 34E on the 1st January 1958. At this time as well Grantham Shed became 34F instead of 35B. I have always wished that Grantham had received 34E as then both the sheds where my father worked and near to where I was born and then ultimately lived would have both been 34E.All be it that at the time of my birth Grantham was an LNER shed and 12 months were to pass before Nationalisation took place.

Kind Regards,Derek.

Edited to correct statement regarding Hitchin Shed, where I was in error. Thanks to "Kudu" for putting me right.
Last edited by 60129 GUY MANNERING on Thu May 16, 2013 10:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Neasden 34E

Post by alang » Wed May 15, 2013 10:56 am

Hi Derek. What memories you are bringing back! I know the area where you used to live (Kynaston Avenue) well and can assure you that unless you have been back recently, you wouldn't recognise it! A lot of those old single storey hospital wards have now been replaced by a smart new housing estate and where the eye unit used to be is I think, designated for a new Asda store! Your knowledge of Neasden sheds is outstanding! Really impressed that you can lay your hands on loco listings like that! At the risk of boring other readers too much (and Den (Enterprise) in particular as he has heard all this before!) my father was, at his death in 1957, a driver at Neasden and I am led to believe from family members that he received a 30 year service award which obviously means that he must have started with the railways in the 1930's. I assume that he worked his way through the system as cleaner, fireman and then on to driver. Are you aware of any existing logs, records etc that might confirm his work record? I assume my mother, also long gone, would have received a widows pension from BR and wondered if any records exist with regard to that. I know the National Archives hold some records but not sure what and have not got round yet to going there. Den remembers working with my father in the 50's which was obviously the BR and not LNER days, and I would be fascinated to know what routes he might have driven or fired during the LNER period. Also what locos he may have worked on. Any ideas? The only firm evidence I have is a photo of him driving "Derby County" as the photo was taken in a station and the name is clearly visible. Lastly, I'm pretty sure I have an old photo somewhere (probably the loft!) of the Bridge Road football team taken at a cup final which I think we played against Kensal Rise at the pitches by the Welsh Harp. Pretty sure also that Ron is present in the pic! If I can find it and you let me have your address I will send you a copy. Bet everybody else is getting fed up with our little jog along memory lane!
Thanks and kind regards
Alan

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