GNR railway book

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Mickey
NBR J36 0-6-0
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GNR railway book

Post by Mickey » Sun Sep 15, 2019 11:37 am

A new railway book by Michael A. Vanns a GNR enthusiast I believe who has previously published a book about GNR signalling has just published a book entitled Great Northern Railway Gallery which features a number of interesting and some previously rare photographs of the following-

1.Caledonian Down s/box which was situated between the Down slow and Down goods line on the approach to the Caledonian road over bridge and appeared to have contained a small 10-15 lever frame at a guess and was also quite low to rail level. The box apparently closed in 1900 when Holloway South Down box was opened. I never knew of this box existence before??.

2.Finsbury Park No.7 s/box located north of Finsbury Park station on the Edgware branch showing a North London Railway tank loco with it's train about to pass the box sometime between 1900-1910.

3. A larger and clearer photograph taken inside Hitchin Yard s/box circa 1917 and featuring the signalman on the lever frame and a young lady called 'Miss. Nun' who was employed as a 'telegraph lad' by the GNR at that time is seen standing at the single needle telegraph instruments along the back wall of the box, I wonder whatever became of her and did she become a signalwoman around the Hitchin area in the 1920s & 1930s I wonder?.

4. A larger and clearer photograph of the memorial cross at Abotts Ripton that was erected in commemoration of the nearby 1876 accident that was located beside the Down fast line and features a clearer study of the original Abotts Ripton s/box standing in the background which was eventually replaced by the newer 1892 box that was it's self eventually closed around 1976.

I presume the sight of a large stone memorial topped off with a large wooden cross standing beside the track on full view to the passengers on passing trains may have been on reflection not a great idea with train accidents and crashes being all to frequent on the railways back in the 1870s & 1880s although it was well meant when it was erected no doubt.

The are also a number of other interesting photographs within the book many of which I have never seen before.

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thesignalman
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Re: GNR railway book

Post by thesignalman » Sun Sep 15, 2019 1:35 pm

Miss Nunn would not have been allowed to become a signalman in those days, it was not considered women's work and even when they did under special measures during WW2 they were limited to low grade boxes - an arrangement that continued through to the 1970s.

John
"BX there, boy!"
Signalling history: https://www.signalbox.org/
Signalling and other railway photographs: https://433shop.co.uk/

Mickey
NBR J36 0-6-0
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Re: GNR railway book

Post by Mickey » Sun Sep 15, 2019 5:15 pm

Interesting John I obviously wasn't aware of that although I never gave it any thought before. I remember the late Roy Revell a Hitchin relief signalman mentioning something to me when he was at WGC one day about there use to be a female 'telegraph lad' at Sandy box at onetime although no dates were mentioned but I assumed it was possibly during the 1960s?.

As has previously been mentioned on here Hitchin Yard's lever frame that is shown in the photograph facing the running lines was later replaced with a frame at the back of the box that was facing away from the running lines.

When I went as a telegraph lad at Welwyn Garden City during 1972-74 a former resident signalman of Hitchin Yard was also at the box during that time on 'light duties' acting as a telegraph lad who was called Ron Hawkins I believe who I recall was a nice fella who must have been about 60 at that time but I remember that he knew the single needle telegraph very well as was the case with all three of the resident WGC signalmen at that time having all being 'brought up on the needle' on the GN section of the LNER main line for all of there railway service.

Hatfield Shed
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Re: GNR railway book

Post by Hatfield Shed » Tue Oct 01, 2019 10:12 am

Mickey wrote:
Sun Sep 15, 2019 11:37 am
A new railway book by Michael A. Vanns a GNR enthusiast I believe who has previously published a book about GNR signalling has just published a book entitled Great Northern Railway Gallery ...
If it proves even half as good as his illustrated history of GNR signalboxes it will be worthwhile. Looks like my wife's problem of 'what to get him for Christmas' is solved.

Mickey
NBR J36 0-6-0
Posts: 110
Joined: Sun Jan 27, 2019 7:27 am

Re: GNR railway book

Post by Mickey » Tue Oct 01, 2019 7:47 pm

Hatfield Shed wrote:
Tue Oct 01, 2019 10:12 am
Mickey wrote:
Sun Sep 15, 2019 11:37 am
A new railway book by Michael A. Vanns a GNR enthusiast I believe who has previously published a book about GNR signalling has just published a book entitled Great Northern Railway Gallery ...
If it proves even half as good as his illustrated history of GNR signalboxes it will be worthwhile. Looks like my wife's problem of 'what to get him for Christmas' is solved.
Yeah I had a flick through the book Hatfield Shed and quite a number of the photographs in it I had never seen before and I would say it is a worthy companion to his other book on Great Northern Railway signalling and signal boxes.

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