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The North Western at Work - A Portrait of the LNWR

The North Western at Work - A Portrait of the LNWR

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In its heyday in 1913, the London & North Western Railway carried over 90 million passengers and originated 30 million tons of freight across its 1,850 route miles of track. With over 3,000 steam steam locomotives, 75,000 wagons and 6,000 horses, it was one of the biggest employers in the world; and with its capital of $120 million, it claimed to be the largest joint stock company in the world. The company traced its lineage back to the Liverpool & Manchester Railway and the dawn of the railway age with justification was it dubbed "The Premier Line'. This book goes beyond the well-publicised glamour and public prestige of Britain's largest rail- way company to discover how it actually worked, as a major commercial enterprise endeavouring to do right by its staff, provide an efficient service against stiff opposition and reward its 'proprietors' with a suitable dividend.

Drawing on a vast collection of LNWR photo- graphs and ephemera amassed over 60 years, the authors, father and son, paint a remarkably vivid picture of the working lives and attitudes of the men and management of an Edwardian railway in its prime. In particular, extensive reference is made to an extremely rare volume on the proceedings of a 1908 Conciliation Board which looked into the pay and conditions of the Company's workforce.

From axlebox greaser to Chairman, the conditions, wages, duties, aspirations and frustrations of the entire spectrum of railwaymen are examined through the medium of contemporary accounts and first-hand reminiscences. Also studied and illustrated in detail are the signalling and train regulation of a major junction and the working of a steam shed and erecting shop, using the LNWR's major installation at Rugby as a microcosm of the whole system.

Combining much rare historical detail and previously unpublished photographs with a leavening of humour and a great affection for the subject, The North Western at Work provides an unprecedented insight into life on the railway 80 years ago.

Dr Robert Preston Hendry has childhood memories of the LNWR before the Grouping. and his life-long fascination with railways in general and the North Western in particular he has passed to his son, Robert. Together they have written numerous books and magazine articles on British railway history, drawing on their extensive archive of written material and photographs

Hardback, 192 pages, black & white photographs

Condition: Very Good

ISBN: 9781852601294

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Updated: 29 December 2022