Wednesday, 11 August 2010

L&SWR Gradient manual - 1887

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.

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