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Western Times


Andy M
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Dear RMWebers,

 

Some of you may be interested in an all new publication about to be released by Transport Treasury Publishing, that it is hoped will appeal to devotees of the Great Western Railway and British Railways Western Region.

 

Bounded by the years 1835-1977, Western Times is intended as a periodical that will build into a reference library and source of inspiration for historians and modellers alike. Subject matter will be varied, as can be judged by the contents list for Issue No.1. Each copy will contain eighty pages of pure and unashamed nostalgia where history is explained, illustrated and at times questioned. Images are in both colour and black and white (90+) and in the main unseen, bound in a card cover and printed on quality art paper (273mm x 215mm). The concept is for issues to be more like a series of books, easily displayed on collectors shelves and negating the need for the careful storage or binding associated with traditional magazines.

 

The editorial team, Kevin Robertson, Jeremy Clements and myself, very much look forward to interaction, feedback and challenge from the readership and that this debate will go some way towards sharing, recording and expanding knowledge of the 'Old Company'. We would also be delighted to hear from any authors and photographers who may wish to contribute their work. Two issues will be released this year, with plans to go quarterly in 2022.

 

The price for Western Times is £12.50 and copies can be ordered now from Transport Treasury Publishing

 

Kind regards,

Andy.

 

Western Times Cover (Issue 1).JPG

Western Times Contents.JPG

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Posted (edited)

Hmm - looks as if it could well be interesting, thanks for the info.  Incidentally why is the cut-off date 1977 as there was still an awful of 'Westernry' about for a good while after that.

Edited by The Stationmaster
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14 minutes ago, The Stationmaster said:

Hmm - looks as if it could well be interesting, thanks for the info.  Incidentally why is the cut-off date 1977 as there was still an awful of 'Westernry' about for a good while after that.

It does look interesting.

I wonder if the 1977 date coincides with the withdrawal of the last Western Region hydraulics? I do agree though that there was still much 'Westernry' to be seen after that date.

 

cheers

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Mike and Kevin,

 

Thank you both for your replies and we did muse long and hard before imposing a timeframe upon Western Times content.

 

As you have identified the 1977 cut-off coincides with the withdrawal of the last Diesel-Hydraulics from revenue service and what could be argued as the end of Western individualism in motive power terms at least. There are many other fine publications that deal with the more 'modern image' developments since that time and we will be consciously steering clear of the preservation movement (unless artefacts directly relate to the subject matter being discussed). Your 'Westernry' comments are valid and noted, and if topics stray slightly beyond 1977 it will certainly be considered. 

 

I do hope you like the publication and find it a little bit different from previously well trodden ground. I can't stress enough our desire to interact with the readership and hopefully unearth new or hidden information, to the benefit of all disciples of 'God's Wonderful Railway'.

 

Regards,

Andy.

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As I have recently written elsewhere ('Smoke& Steam') we on the WR were still treading our own way (obviously far better ;) ) way on a number of things until we ceased to exist as a Region in 1992.  We then took some of them elsewhere to educate various lesser mortals.

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You had me when I saw the entry on GWR barrows! Not to mention several other items of interest. Duly ordered. Thank you gents for taking this initiative.

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, Mikkel said:

You had me when I saw the entry on GWR barrows! Not to mention several other items of interest. Duly ordered. Thank you gents for taking this initiative.

Good morning Mikkel,

 

It is interesting that one of our more niche articles grabbed your attention! This is also from one of our very first contributors, illustrated with a selection of contemporary images from his own collection.

 

As an editorial team, it is one of our aims to delve into some of the rarely (if ever) previously discussed topics that made up the very fabric of the GWR. Whilst there will always be column inches devoted to shiny express passenger locomotives, standby for some more unusual and thought provoking subject matter as well.

 

Thank you for your support and we would be delighted to receive any feedback you may have in due course. We really intend Western Times to be about what the readership wants and not what we think they want!

 

Regards,

Andy.

Edited by Andy M
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A(nother)  successor to the well loved GWJ. Thanks

What is your approach to the absorbed etc around 1922? Are they inside or outside the remit?

Regards

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1 hour ago, BMS said:

A(nother)  successor to the well loved GWJ. Thanks

What is your approach to the absorbed etc around 1922? Are they inside or outside the remit?

Regards

Hi BMS,

 

There are inevitably going to be comparisons and comments made relating to the GWRJ. It almost feels like we are forming a Rock and Roll band, with the expectation that we are going to replace The Beatles........it just ain't going to happen!

We must pursue our own style and direction and hopefully that will make a mark and gather a following. For what it's worth though, I love the work of The Beatles. ;)

 

In regards to the Absorbed and Constituent Companies, throughout the history of the GWR, they are most certainly in remit!

 

Regards,

Andy.

Edited by Andy M
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Interesting, I think I will stick an order in and give it a try.  Hopefully the post war GWR period is covered in the Newton Abbot brakedown train article, as that would be spot on for my modelling….

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25 minutes ago, The Fatadder said:

Interesting, I think I will stick an order in and give it a try.  Hopefully the post war GWR period is covered in the Newton Abbot brakedown train article, as that would be spot on for my modelling….

Hi Fatadder,

 

You probably won't be surprised to learn that I penned that particular article myself, from research for my own modelling needs. It gives a synopsis on vehicles known to have featured in Newton Abbot breakdown operations (cranes, vans, ancillaries) from the turn of the century to cessation of steam crane operations.

 

I hope you find it of interest.

 

Regards,

Andy.

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Posted (edited)

Many thanks to all of you that have pre-ordered a copy of Western Times Issue No.1.

I am pleased to inform that it's on the way, after this little lot (15 bags worth) went to the Post Office today.

We do hope you find it interesting and look forward to your feedback.


Kind regards,

Andy.

71098A18-C5CC-406F-8223-82597AA996FC.jpeg

Edited by Andy M
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Could be interesting just commenced 0 Gauge layout based on Vale of Neath Line in a 16 x 12 room with access to garden but wont be going out there this year. Did my Apprentice ship with BR back in the 1950s based in Neath works Saw lot of the  valleys and main line Its a large area and are wondering how they will cover such a large area.

Will await feedback from others before dipping my feet in

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First impression is very good, the paper quality is top notch.

haven’t had a chance but flick through the photos so far (1940s milk train was of particular interest)!    Looking forward to a good read once I finally finish work…

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Mine came this morning.  I've not had time for more than a brief glance but it looks good.  The only error I have spotted so far is the caption describing a Class 118 dmu as a 117.  It's easily done.

 

Chris

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1 hour ago, brushman47544 said:

Sounds like the Western Times takes its inspiration from Kevin Robertson’s Southern Way, in which case it should be an interesting regular read.

 

Andrew,

 

That is a fair comparison to make and not surprising considering Kevin is a member of the editorial team. As stated earlier in the thread, it is very much our intention to present Western Times as a series of books rather than magazines.

 

Regards,

Andy Malthouse.

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4 hours ago, The Fatadder said:

Having now managed to give it a proper read, very happy with it. Will definitely be ordering issue two when it’s ready. 
 

 

Lucky devil,

Still awaiting mine in the colonies :)

 

Khris

 

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On 22/06/2021 at 09:31, Andy M said:

Hi Fatadder,

 

You probably won't be surprised to learn that I penned that particular article myself, from research for my own modelling needs. It gives a synopsis on vehicles known to have featured in Newton Abbot breakdown operations (cranes, vans, ancillaries) from the turn of the century to cessation of steam crane operations.

 

I hope you find it of interest.

 

Regards,

Andy.

 

I enjoyed the article on the NA Breakdown Train, which was made more interesting by the inclusion of several photos I hadn't previously seen. One interesting point, not specifically mentioned in the article, is that the photo of No 3 at Tanners Road, Goodrington, in 1956 clearly shows the crane operating with an original E. R. & F. Turner of Ipswich boiler, whilst those two years later at Torre show that it was by then fitted (once again) with a 1917 Swindon-built VFT boiler. Whilst it is known that both of the Ransomes & Rapier 36-ton cranes Nos 2 and 3  were periodically refitted with an original Turner boiler when the VFT boiler was due an overhaul, it is not known whether one or two Turner boilers were maintained, nor for that matter how many VFT boilers were built. The sole extant VFT boiler is designed to be capable of installation in either of the R&R cranes or in the 36-ton Stothert & Pitt crane of 1908, but there seem to be no records of boiler numbers nor boiler changes between the cranes. Photos which add to the established knowledge of boiler use are always welcome.

 

It is also not clear when a Turner boiler was used for the last time, but it is likely that the period circa 1956 when the NA crane R&R No 3 was so fitted is the last time that one of these bizarre boilers was used in this country. There is a photo of No 3 working on the erection of the A38 bridge at Heathfield, date unknown, with a Turner boiler, but this is likely to have been at about the same time as the Tanners Road photo reproduced in your article.

 

I am intrigued by your assertion that the lettering on match trucks (and therefore by inference jib runners) was pale straw. I would be interested to know eh source of your information on this point since there is no evidence of pale straw anywhere on No 2 today and I had always assumed that in both GW and BR(W) days white paint was used.

 

You also mention that the Laira was the first depot in the West to respond to the red paint directive. It is worth noting that despite this Laira never had a red-painted breakdown crane, all were black until circa 1984 when Laira repainted ADRR95213, the former GWR No 19 45-ton crane (now preserved at the Flour Mill), yellow, making it the only R&R crane to be so disfigured. All subsequent Laira cranes have been yellow. There are photos of this spectacle in the gallery on the Breakdown Crane Association website at http://www.bdca.org.uk/gallery/index.php/Ransomes-and-Rapier/ADRR95213-Album

 

All of the original GWR steam breakdown cranes which remained on the Western, with the exception of No 19, remained black throughout BR(W) days, probably due to the very strong residual feeling that there were two ways to do a thing, the Swindon way and the wrong way. The Swindon way was black for breakdown cranes!

 

Anyway, a great new publication, well done, and I look forward in particular to many more articles about GWR/BR(W) breakdown cranes and their operation.

 

  

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Craneman,

 

Thank you very much for the extra information you have provided above, especially the insightful summary of the crane boilers. This is for certain another article in it's own right (hint hint)!

 

This expanding and sharing of knowledge is exactly what we had hoped Western Times would begin to elicit, and for me makes the whole effort of editing the publication worthwhile. 

 

To address a couple of your queries:

a) The paint colour of lettering and numerals is an often discussed topic of conjecture. My conclusions are drawn from Swindon Painting Charts, verbal memories (not always the most accurate assessment) and the few extant colour images (lets not open that can of worms here). I have seen white, pale straw and ivory white, all quoted as the applied colour by reputable sources. Then of course you have to consider varnish, ageing and weathering. I guess you pay your money and take your pick!

b) When referring to the application of the red livery directive, in my defence I did refer to the Laira Breakdown Train (i.e. the vans) and didn't mention the crane itself. I completely agree these remained black. There are images showing the vans in red, one of which I think we have saved up for a future issue.

 

Again many thanks for your engagement and delighted to hear you have enjoyed reading the first issue.

 

Kind regards,

Andy.

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