The Jo Roesen Scrapbook


Miscellany 2

The 6 pictures below were taken by John Diston in the 1950s, and were kindly given to us by Brian Parsons. John and Brian worked together in Broadway in the Gordon Russell furniture factory, and John let Brian copy these pictures, knowing how interested Brian was in the trains at Broadway station. 


A picture taken from the cattle dock looking north. A 14xx is pushing an auto train out of the station and towards Honeybourne. We don’t know the exact date of this picture, but note that the cattle dock and its associated pointwork is still in situ. This was taken out in 1957. The down home signal on the right has a sighting board, so that it can be seen more easily against the footbridge behind the camera. The trailer looks like one of the original rail motors, with steps leading down to the track.

2. 68xx

A Grange class with steam on hauls train of hoppers towards Cheltenham. Although undated, the picture must have been taken between 1957 when the horse dock sidings were taken out, and 1959, when the crossover was also removed – in this picture it is still in place, to the left and a little behind the engine. There is interesting detail around the cattle dock – an old sleeper built shed buried in the embankment, next to the end of the dock, which was marked ‘Coal’ on the station plans, available elsewhere on the site. A line of GWR spearhead fencing ends in a cast iron GWR post, with a decorative ball on top. We have one of these in store! Unfortunately the original cattle dock cannot be recreated, because the new platform will be extended northwards over this point, and because the gardens of the stationmaster’s house have also been widened, so covering part of this scene.

3. 92xxx

A heavy freight train thunders through Broadway station, heading south. The loco is 9F 92224, a Crewe built example which was scrapped in 1967 after a last allocation to 8B Warrington Dallam, following an initial allocation to Banbury. The train consists of mineral wagons and is typical of the type of freight that used the line between the Midlands and the S Wales coalfields. The picture is undated but is prior to 1960, when the station closed to passengers and the running in board on the left was removed. The headlamp code shows this to be an express freight train, one which would have shaken the station to its very foundations!

4. 5421

GWR 5421 trundles into Broadway station on a wet day in the 1950s. Two female passengers have stepped to one side to let the photographer John Diston get a good view of the incoming auto train. The auto coach with its distinctive step handrails half way down the side can just be made out behind. One lady is clutching a shopping bag, so perhaps a trip to Cheltenham is in the offing. 5421 was one of a small series of tank engines built by the GWR in the early 1930s for light passenger work, and all 25 examples were fitted with push/pull apparatus for auto train operation. They were fast runners, but in the 1950s branch line work started to decline and the first withdrawal of the class was in 1956, with 5421 being withdrawn in 1962, when last based in Oswestry. None of the class have been preserved. In our collection is also a photograph of 5418 waiting at the station (author unknown). This loco was withdrawn in 1960.

5. Hall class

A Hall class on an express freight at full cry with a train of box vans. Very clear on the right is the Broadway running in board, which will be reproduced very shortly.

6. Castle Class

A Castle with a long down Cornishman is about to thunder through the station. This is a terrific picture, and is thought to be the inspiration for a painting by J Gibson of a 14xx in the station, subject of a raffle prize at the BAG. Note the pigeon baskets awaiting dispatch, the early style GWR benches, the lamp hut, two sack barrows parked under the bridge, and what is probably John Diston’s bicycle leaning against the steps. The shadows show that this was a sunny day, and the photograph was taken in the early morning in the late 1950s. The station is otherwise deserted.

Next Page Miscellany 3


---------------------Page last updated on 9th May 2013 -------------------------