Archive for the ‘English Rail’ Category

Signage & Information in the London Underground

posted by Engineman Wook

[shown below is the Edwardian Chalk Farm tube station]

Chalk Farm tube station -- 111713This web log is by an Englishman, Mr Doug Rose, who is interested in the logic of signage & information design, notably in the layout of the London Underground:


He writes: 

‘I am fascinated by human reasoning of graphic information in all its manifestations: forms, maps, signs, instructions, book layouts, all of it. I am just as interested in the logic (or commonly the lack of it) of (more…)


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The London Underground

The London Underground

posted by Engineman Preserved Wook

Metroplitan 1 -- 111713The London Underground which Charles Pearson commenced building in 1860 was fortuitous in History, and not only in aiding transport congestion in & out of the Victorian City; by 1940, lines ran two & three deep, and thus Londoners had a shelter from Heinie bombs that might as well have been purpose-built & was simply another one in the eye for the dreadful &  unprepossessing little ravine German, A Hitler, after he’d already managed to lose for his fool self  the aerial Battle in the Autumn before the Blitz:


[Engineman Wook

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[17 November 2013]

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by Engineman Wook

[Postwar nationalization of English railroads was a watershed in their railroading history.  The following is a list of the relevant Wikipedia links on this topic, and it is simply meant by me to provide a coherent reading-sequence in order to help interested railfen to get some of this postwar English (‘British’) steam locomotive history into their fool heads — BW]

British Railways Steam Locomotives:


British Railways Standard Class Steam Locomotives:

BR Standard Class 2 2-6-0:


BR Standard Class 3 2-6-0:


BR Standard Class 4 2-6-0:


BR standard class 4 4-6-0:


BR standard class 5:


BR Standard Class 6:


BR Standard Class 7:


BR Standard Class 8:


BR Standard Class 9F:


BR Standard Class 2 2-6-2T:


BR Standard Class 3 2-6-2T:


BR Standard Class 4 2-6-4T:


[Engineman Wook

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[30 October 2010]

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by Engineman Preserved Wook

To even begin the survey of English late-modern steam, here is the needed Wikipedia lowdown, on late-modern English steam locomotive classes:


There is a lot to get squared away, especially as Labour after 1948 consolidated the ‘Big 4′ previously privately-owned railways’ motive power under a re-numbering scheme.  It is all rather a bit of a mess which goes far to show why the English so often wind up having to ‘win the last battle’.

[Engineman Wook

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[10 July 2010]

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by Preserved Wook, Boston & Maine Railroad Engineman

Barnacle Bill is a Yorkshireman railfan who serves in the English merchant navy and who blogs at:


I’ve been meaning to catch up on English steam for a good long time; my grand-niece who ran away to England in August, 1939, after a summer stint working at the World’s Fair, and who worked as a teletype operater for Reuters in the Blitz before sailing home in a convoy in the fall of 1941 just in time for Pearl Harbor, or her cousin Leland Jacobson out of Eagle Lake, MN., in England with the American Army artillery for the Invasion, said that English trains “was real (more…)

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091809-nellies-crew-in-the-deep-south-by-rowland-emett 1

by Emmett R Smith

An English artist who also happened, in his Tory way, to be a devoted trainman at the very post-WW II period of British railway nationalisation was Rowland Emett.091809-rowland-emett3 2  In his caricatures of the day in Punch one can quite see his regret at the passing of all the regional English railway companies, some quite small.  Indeed, Emett lampoons affectionately their bucolic ways that the postwar Labour party took as such a reproach to the then-prevailing political phantasy of English ‘public efficiency’.  A treasure of my childhood was his book about Nellie, the locomotive, and her excursion to North America, New World for Nellie.  In it, Emett indeed sends up the gargantuan propensities (to English eyes) of the American steam locomotive.  Afterward, Nellie returned home to England under the sea, and on the way her crew met up with some improbable divers knitting together breaks in the trans-Atlantic cable.  More may be read about her creator, here:


Also, in Cabinet of Wonders web log, there is this evocative write-up, by another childhood fan of Emett’s:


091809-repairing-the-trans-atlantic-cable 3


[Engineman Wook

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[18 September 2009]

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A Tornado In The Mist

by Engineman Wook

Here is a view of the new English “Tornado” 4-6-2 Pacific-type steam locomotive boiling away to beat Hell on a dampish kind of morning last Spring…

090109 Tornado in the mist, England     copyright  The Telegraph

…and a video link from this Summer of The Beast at work:


(Thanks and a Wook hat-tip to Dr Davis!)

[Emmett R Smith

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[1 September 2009] 

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