Driver Tom Blades

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rosieblades13
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Re: Driver Tom Blades

Post by rosieblades13 » Sat Jan 09, 2016 1:42 am

Hi, it would appear so, I'm sure Thomas and Beatrice would be my grandparents, my dad's parents. I never knew them, they were gone before I came along. If Thomas Sr was great grandfather to both of us, that must mean we're cousins? We might know eachother, it's just you don't know who's who when the only identification is a user name! I thought it was awesome finding all this about great grandad, especially when I saw the photograph! I'm just interested in finding out as much as I can about him and the team of the Blades family! Regards, rosieblades13

gemmablades
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Re: Driver Tom Blades

Post by gemmablades » Sat Jan 16, 2016 11:24 pm

Hi, I also am a great granddaughter of Tom Blades. I am in Manchester and my mum is the daughter of William Blades who is the son of Tom Blades. They did have a large family although my grandad didn't really keep in touch with his siblings, so i don't know any of the Gateshead/Newcastle family. Would be great to hear more from some other great grandchildren!

gemmablades
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Re: Driver Tom Blades

Post by gemmablades » Sat Jan 16, 2016 11:34 pm

Hi, seems my previous post didn't work! I am also a great grandchild of Tom Blades. My Grandad is William Blades, the son of Tom and my mum is Jennifer Blades, William's only child. We are in Manchester. My grandad didn't keep in touch with his siblings at all and my boyfriend has stumbled across this site after seeing a pic of Tom Blades in the Guardian online! I would love to hear from some other descendants of Tom Blades!

Thanks,
Gemma

wallis11
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Re: Driver Tom Blades

Post by wallis11 » Tue Jan 19, 2016 11:11 pm

Hi Folks, great to see some posts on Tom Blades from other family members (I made the original posts on the forum and posted the pic).
I've been researching my Great Grandfather Tom Blades on & off now for a couple of years and have collected quite a lot of information about him (as my late mother, Ada Blades, used to talk about him, but didn't have any photo's or info and that sparked my interest)
I've discovered through my research that he had quite a career and that steam engine speed trials were in his DNA, culminating in the famous non-stop run on the Flying Scotsman on 1st May 1928 (photos of him on the platform before the run are in the Railway Magazine 1928). His first documented involvement in racing trains was as a fireman on a loco driven by Robinson, for the north eastern railways during the "Race to the North" in 1895 (just found an article on that in North Eastern Railway Magazine from 1913, which also has a pic of a young Tom Blades!) and he continued to be involved in speed trials throughout his career.
Feel free to drop me a private message on the forum and we can share info (happy to share the info / pics I have and would love to get any new info from you)

wallis11
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Re: Driver Tom Blades

Post by wallis11 » Wed Jan 20, 2016 12:46 am

Sorry folks just a quick correction to my last post - the drivers name was Robert Nicholson (not Robinson) to whom Tom Blades was fireman on the 'Race to the North' races of 1885 - just wanted to correct that for anyone wishing to search for this.

wallis11
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Re: Driver Tom Blades

Post by wallis11 » Wed Jan 20, 2016 10:13 pm

here is page from article on Race to the North 1895 with a pic of young Tom Blades (bottom left)
Attachments
T Blades Race to the North.pdf
pic of young Tom Blades
(617.84 KiB) Downloaded 172 times

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richard
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Re: Driver Tom Blades

Post by richard » Fri Jan 22, 2016 2:42 pm

Have you been in touch with the NERA and the Darlington "Head of Steam"? It might be worth a search through the archives kept by both. (The NERA archives are kept at the Head of Steam).

If you want to see engines he may well have worked in his career, then Head of Steam has the surviving Tennant 2-4-0, and the NRM have the surviving D17, which I think is up the road at Shildon (? the NRM move their stock around!). When new, both types were used on express passenger work by the NER.

Long shot, but he didn't leave any writings or memoirs, did he? If he did, then I think the NERA would be very interested!
Richard Marsden
LNER Encyclopedia

wallis11
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Re: Driver Tom Blades

Post by wallis11 » Sat Jan 23, 2016 7:09 pm

Hi Richard, thanks for the reply to my last posting - funnily enough, I visited the Darlington Head of Steam museum for the first time a couple of weeks ago and used the Ken Hoole study centre for the first time last week (and that's where I got access to the North Eastern Railway magazine - they've got the magazine from 1911 onwards and so far have got to 1916). The study centre is a great source of information and well worth a visit for anyone doing research into the NER/LNER and they are really helpful

rosieblades13
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Re: Driver Tom Blades

Post by rosieblades13 » Tue Mar 08, 2016 12:52 am

I haven't looked on the site for a while and now i've found some new posts from other family members, I can't work out how to send a private message. My email address should be visible to other members so feel free to email me! Just to recap, Thomas Blades was my great grandfather, my grandparents were Thomas and Beatrice, my dad was Kenneth incase anyone out there might have known him. Am I right in thinking that William would be my granddad's brother, therefore my great uncle? I'm slightly lost with who's who now as well! Please get in touch if you know how to!

wallis11
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Re: Driver Tom Blades

Post by wallis11 » Wed Mar 09, 2016 10:00 pm

Hi Rosie, good to see your post. My grandparents were William (Harry) Blades and Mary Isabel Purvis (Beatrice's sister), as not sure whether you knew, but the two sisters (Beatrice & Mary) married the two brothers (Thomas & William). My mother was Ada Blades (one of eleven brothers & sisters), so that makes us second cousins I think!

Lilyching
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Re: Driver Tom Blades

Post by Lilyching » Mon Mar 14, 2016 11:42 am

Hi I have been reading these posts with great interest. I am also a great grandchild of the great Tom Blades! My dad was William Blades. I have the same picture of Tom and one other. I'm afraid I have no other information about him. My dad died in 1995. The Blades family were never great at keeping in touch! We became scattered and I lost contact with all my relatives a long time ago, to my great regret.

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52D
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Re: Driver Tom Blades

Post by 52D » Mon Mar 14, 2016 11:26 pm

Transcript of a report in the Berwick Advertiser Thursday 14th February 1924.

The L and N.E.R. Company have again been experimenting on the Northern section between Newcastle and Edinburgh with a Great Northern engine of the latest and largest type. The engine has been in charge during the trials of Mr Tom Blades one of the most experienced and capable drivers in the Gateshead sheds. We understand satisfactory results have been claimed for the new engine.

Would this have been when they were deciding on making the K3 a group standard engine?
Hi interested in the area served by 52D. also researching colliery wagonways from same area.

wallis11
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Re: Driver Tom Blades

Post by wallis11 » Fri Mar 25, 2016 10:44 am

Hi 52D, I have several articles that detail that my great grandfather was performing the speed trials on the Raven A2 Pacifics around that time - could it possibly that engine class that the paper article was referring to?

Would really love to have a scanned copy of the article. Would you consider uploading a copy of the newspaper article onto the forum, so I can download a copy??

Thanks for posting this as I didn't have any information on this

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52D
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Re: Driver Tom Blades

Post by 52D » Fri Mar 25, 2016 5:24 pm

hi there are several articles that mention Tom Blades but i havent yet worked out how to download them from the site. There is a reference to the A2 trials but no mention of driver. If i do manage to download the articles i will forward them. I do think the freight trials were with the K3.
Hi interested in the area served by 52D. also researching colliery wagonways from same area.

Paulblades51
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Re: Driver Tom Blades

Post by Paulblades51 » Fri Apr 08, 2016 4:41 pm

Hi Guys,

My name is Paul Blades and I'm a direct descendant of Tom Blades of Flying Scotsman fame. The photo on this forum was restored by me and I agree it's a cracking photo, Gemma I think you said that your mother is Jennifer Blades I have your mother on my family tree. Another person said they were related to Kenneth Blades he too is on my family tree if anyone would like to get in touch please feel free to cantact me.

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