On the 9th August 1912, the Board of the London and South Western Railway approved this new rule book. By the looks of it, this was simply an updated version of the company's 1904 rule book. Additionally this, in its turn, was a predecessor to the company's 1921 rule book. In fact, the three books are so alike that without the dates on the front it would be hard to determine which was which. Contrast this with rule books from 1864 and 1884, and it is clear to see that this similarity indicates that by the early 20th century the procedures within the industry had become very ingrained. As such, the rule book, the most fundamental element of the railwayman's life, is highly representative of the stage that the railways were at in their development.
Thursday, 12 August 2010
Wednesday, 11 August 2010
Gradient manuals of this type were issued to all engine drivers on the L&SWR. This one from 1887 is presumably the last (or first) type that was issued as the inside cover, shown below, are written the men that used it. First there was engineman J. Meaton who was based at Northam and was presented it in 1887. However, it was eventually passed to A. Plummer, presumably a driver at Nine Elms, in April 1930. This indicates that this document was used for over 40 years by these men, but also that a replacement was not issued either by the London and South Western Railway, or its successor, the Southern Railway. This was despite many more lines being opened. It is, therefore, quite possible that these men were main line drivers, as if they were driving on any of the new lines that were constructed after 1887 (all branch, light or secondary lines), the companies would have be required to issue a new gradient manual.
Monday, 9 August 2010
I'm not entirely sure why this leaflet was produced, however I have seen a number of them through the years giving information on a range of British Railways facilities. This one is on the Feltham Marshalling Yard which was finished by the London and South Western Railway in 1921. While there is no date on it, from the propensity of small wagons and the steam locomotive pictured on the rear cover, I can only assume that it was issued in the 1950s. This little leaflet gives a range of details regarding the yard, such as its size, it operation and the number of train departures and arrivals. For more information on the Feltham Marshalling Yard, please have a look at my latest Blog post on the main 'Turnip Rail' website HERE.
Sunday, 8 August 2010
The Southern Railway Magazine (SRM), the staff magazine of the Southern Railway (SR), was essentially a later version of the first railway company staff magazine, the South Western Gazette (SWG), that was independently published for the London and South Western Railway's staff from 1881. This became the South Western Magazine (SWM) in 1916 and it is this title that is shown on the top of the SRM's cover above. On the grouping, the magazine was from thereon published with all of the SR's staff in mind, the other constituent companies not having established their own staff magazines before 1922. This said, it still maintained for many years a bias towards events taking place in the old L&SWR territories.
Where it differed from it's forerunner, the SWG and for two years the SWM, was that the SRM was owned by the company as the SWM had been taken over by the L&SWR management in 1918. This meant that SRM's content was far more in line with the needs of the management to inform and instruct the workforce, whereas its forerunners were much less inclined to explicitly project any of management's views.
This is probably one of the most useful Documents for my PhD. I know it doesn't look like much, but it shows part of the process of election L&SWR directors engaged in before they actually became directors. From the literature, the general feeling about railway company boards in the 19th century was that they were self-perpetuating. So, for example, when a board member died or retired, the remaining directors would choose a replacement from those who applied for the vacancy. Yet, for the appointment to be completed prospective directors had to be confirmed by a meeting of the shareholders. As the documents shows, the new directors therefore had to engage in a degree of canvassing. Therefore, the subject of the above circular above, Arthur E. Guest, clearly was detailing his positive attributes for the shareholders to increase his chances of election.
Guest was confirmed as a board member and served as a L&SWR director until 1898. He, therefore, became one of the company's longest serving directors. He was born in 1841 and had been educated at Harrow and Trinity College Cambridge. Aside from his membership of the L&SWR board he was also a member of the board of the Taff Vale Railway company.
Saturday, 7 August 2010
This is another rule book for L&SWR staff that in a sense shows the division between the different departments within the company. While the main company Rule Book was issued to all staff, the one shown was an extra one supplied to the staff in the Engineering Department. This was issued in 1896, however a more wide-ranging one was issued in 1902 that also covered regulations regarding the maintenance and operation of signals. What they both evidence is the fact that the Engineering department required extra rules and regulations pertinent to their own operations. On the other hand, the Traffic and Running Departments had their own 'Appendix to the working timetable' which detailed their own 'extra' rules and regulations. Thus, the departments by the late 1890s had grown apart to become organisations in their own right. Thus this example and the 1902 instruction book were formulated in isolation by the department chiefs, as a comprehensive common rule book could not be formulated for all departments. I have shown all the pages here so please click on them to take a better look.
This is actually a composite picture of two scans. Hence the discrepancy in the image at its bottom. It details the pay arrangements of three individuals based at Mirfield Station which was was located in the North Eastern Region of BR, it being built originally by the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway. The document shows the individual's rates of pay, their hours, grades and their overtime in January 1957. On the sheet is Mr L. Clegg, who was a grade 4 clerk earning £482 per annum. However, on a later paybill I have from October 1958, it shows that Clegg was raised to £521, but remained a Grade 4 clerk. This indicates that within grades their were scales of pay.
Friday, 6 August 2010
I'm afraid that it would be impossible for me to do complete justice to this book on this site as it is 194 pages long and containing many images and diagrams of parts of locomotives. It is, however, interesting because it basically describes the operation of Britain's last generation of steam locomotives. Further, it would have been issued to Britain's last generation of Steam Engine drivers, as by this time the first moves were being made towards modernisation. Thus, it is one of the last paper relics from the era of steam. It does, however, show how far steam engine technology had developed up until that point.
Thursday, 5 August 2010
These really interesting documents detail the journey of Royal trains on the London and South Western Railway. These documents were presumably given out along the routes of the trains so that people could observe the royal trains if they so desired. The first document was given out on the occasion of Edward VII's journey from Waterloo to Farnborough and his return from Aldershot to Waterloo on 18th May 1909. The reason for the destination and departure stations being different is that he toured various military bases in the region on the day. The second document has a more detail in that the entire timetable is shown. It was issued on occasion of Queen Victoria's journey from Windsor to Portsmouth on the 10th March 1898, where she boarded the Royal Yacht for a holiday in the south of France. These very grand documents do have gold printed on them, so they couldn't have been cheap for the company to produce. But, in an era of patriotic fervour a little extra expense probably wasn't minded.
Until I did an extended search on the web found me the answer, this book's origins were a mystery to me. It is rare to find an item from the Victorian Railway that has a complete lack of information on its origins. So, there is no company stamp on it, and even no details in the text as to what company it was from. This is simply weird, especially as companies in the period had their names emblazoned on almost everything. Eventually, I did find what I think is the answer through an on-line catalogue of documents.
It is, however, interesting that the Great Northern Railway (GNR) felt the need to issue a separate instruction book regarding goods traffic. It reflects the fact that the bulk of the GNR's income came from the flow of goods and that more regulations were required to monitor the service. Comparatively, I do not think that the London and South Western Railway ever felt the need to issue a separate booklet for merchandise traffic, reflecting its smaller role in the company's profits. It would seem that the what supplementary rule books companies issued, depended a great deal on the traffic and operational environment.
This little book is a mere 50 pages long and was issued to all the Southern Railway's staff who worked on their electric services. It came into force on the 1st January 1933 and contained sections of both the general company rule book and the Appendix to the working timetable. With the largest electrified network of the 'Big Four' railway companies, it is unsurprising that the SR deemed it necessary to issue a unique rule book for the electric staff. This said, the London, Midland and Scottish Railway also released their separate rule book for the staff working electric services in 1937. What, however, this document shows is that by the Mid-1930s there were swathes of rules and regulations across the railway industry, so much so that many did not apply to some staff. After all, with no goods services being run by electric trains all the rules and regulations that applied to those services did not need to be learnt by the electric staff in detail, if at all. Therefore, it was presumably much more convenient for the staff to have a dedicated rule book for themselves. This would be a more efficient method of distributing the regulations that issuing each member of staff with the full, more bulky, rule book. I imagine it also cut printing costs...
My favourite image is the last, which showed how to resuscitate someone who had been electrocuted. Simply put, the image shows a very basic version of CPR under the heading, 'Method of Conducting Artificial Respiration.' The instructions were as follows: 'Kneel at one side of, or across the patient, and, without violence, produce a firm, steady, downward pressure (see Fig.1 on page 50). Next release all pressure by swinging your body backwards without lifting your hands from the patient (see Fig 2 on page 50).' I wonder how many times this was required, and how effective it was?
Wednesday, 4 August 2010
These are London and South Western Railway material supply notices from 1912 and 1911 that I originally posted on my other site. I am unsure exactly how they worked by I suspect that they went with the supplies when they were sent to their destinations. Obviously, however, the forms were designed to be attached to only one item, however, on both the documents the supplies were obviously sent to multiple destinations. Possibly, they had 1000s of these things in this period and were exhausting the supply before designing a new form. As for some of the names on the forms, on the first it is signed 'S[urrey]. Warner.' He was the L&SWR's Carriage and Wagon Superintendent between 1906 and 1923. On the second are two names. The first is Gilbert Szlumper, who was at that point a 1st Class Engineering Assistant at Eastleigh and the second is O[sborne].A[nthony].G[eorge]. Edwards, who was at that point the Central District Engineer.
This is actually a blank book, unused by the London and South Western. This Guard's Log book, printed in the 1910s at some point, is surprisingly similar to a Southern Railway version that I presented a few days ago. What this means is that in the period between, at most, 1919 and 1939, the stationary provided to railway staff altered very little. Therefore, it suggests that at least one procedure, was unaltered by the creation of the Big 4 in 1923.
Tuesday, 3 August 2010
Now as some of you might be aware I am not the world's biggest fan of the Great Western Railway. I dunno what it is, but I have never really warmed to the company. It's nothing personal, I suppose it's like my feelings about boiled potatoes, I don't hate them, I can tolerate them, but I wouldn't choose them. However, yesterday I received this item through the post, a GWR 'General Appendix to the Rule Book' that came into force on the 31st of August 1936. I bought it off ebay so I could compare it with the Southern Railway's Appendix from 1934.
While I have not had time to really digest the document, it is clear that it is very, very different to the the Southern Railway's product. They are about the same length, but what is interesting is that the Southern railway's offering is peppered with instructions regarding single locations or stations, something that is very absent from the GWR appendix. Indeed, remove this material from the Southern Railway Appendix, and the book is much smaller. Therefore, the GWR is much denser in content, with far more rules and regulations. Perhaps the GWR was a much stricter railway to work for? Now, it could be argued that because the GWR was a larger network that it required more regulations. But what the GWR Appendix presents are rules for general and universal consumption irrespective of location. Therefore, this to an extent eliminates the argument that there are many more rules because of its size. Of course this is a only an opinion formed with a few glances through, but it is an interesting proposition, especially when considering that many elements of the railway operation and procedure had by this time had been standardised across all the companies.