Sunday, 1 August 2010

Southern Railway Guard's Log Book - 1939-51

This is something that came into my possession about 6 months ago and is the journey log of a Southern Railway goods guard, G. Rowe, who was based at Guildford. It covers the period between April 1939 and July 1951. The log is interesting because it covers the six years of World War Two and shows the effect that the war had on rail transportation in the country. Rowe was required to detail every journey he made in the book, noting down the time he arrived at every station and passed major landmarks such as junctions. He also recorded how late the train was. In the pre-war period he was was only occasionally late, and even then only by a few minutes. However in wartime, be it because of unusual train operations, bombing or low staffing levels, his trains were almost never on time. Below, I have scanned two pages. The first is from 22nd July 1939, when Rowe's train was on time. However, in the second scan, dated the 30th January 1940, he was 105 minutes late arriving at Ascot.

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