ARCHIVE STEAM :


It's a very sad fact that as people pass away that their life long collections get split up and sold, especially if they have no next of kin. The act of house clearance for future tenants provides a quick method to move new tenants into a property and a quick clearance then provides an efficient way to remove possessions. These possessions are then put of for sale for opportune bidders to sort and sell on the goods at their own pace. At Taunton Trains we are always on the look out for railway images from the past to host on this website in order to educate and record the past history of the railway scenes around the Taunton area. A recent discovery of black and white negatives featuring Taunton, being sold on Ebay has gifted viewers of this website some incredibly rare images. It's thought they many have never been seen online, or previously published. While we have made every effort to trace the original photographer the lines of tractability are erased at the point of house clearance, therefore it's impossible to know who took these stunning images and how they lay undiscovered from many years. Clearly the photographer was using excellent equipment from the day and knew how to best frame and pose images. Sadly along with the lack of a traceable name the same applies to any information about dates, workings and stories attached to these images, our captions for each of the images below are merely based upon our own research. While the original photographer retains the copyright to these images for 50 years after passing away, the lack of a traceable owner has lead us to enter these images as part of the 'Taunton Trains Collection'.

Some of the images below date back to the 1930's and were taken on glass plates, others exist on 6"x3" cut film. The job of scanning and repairing images has taken some 30-40 hours of work to bring them up to an acceptable viewing standard, removing scratches, damage, and decomposition.

Adjacent is a direct scan of a glass place negative, this was one of the worst slides we have ever had to attempt to repair for this website, the level of degradation was incredibly high, and in a couple of areas the image needed to be completely rebuilt using parts of other images to provide something to work with. The emphasis is always on repair and replicate rather than change the image and we hope viewers will agree that the finished images below (some of which were in better condition than others) are presented and edited with the up most care and attention to detail.

We would also like to thank Colin J Marsden who provided us with his time and the use of high quality scanning equipment which was large enough to take the outsized negatives, along with editing tips to get the best from the negative scans.

If you are able to provide any additional information please do not hesitate to Contact Us

GWR 4-6-0 'Saint' No.2954 'Tockenham Court' is pictured at Taunton. The locomotive was built in built in March 1913, and was first allocated to Newton Abbot. In 1950 it was reallocated to be based at Swindon and finally taken out of service in July 1952.

Photo: Taunton Trains Collection

GWR 4-6-0 'Saint' No.2978 'Charles J Hambro' is pictured at Taunton. The locomotive was renamed 'Charles J Hambro' in 1935 and taken out of service in 1946 when allocated to Swindon, so this image can be dated between the 10 year gap in dates.

Photo: Taunton Trains Collection

GWR 4-4-0 Bulldog No.3363 'Alfred Baldwin' is pictured at Taunton. Alfred Baldwin was a Conservative MP & GWR Director who was the father of Stanley Baldwin (Conservative Prime Minister). The locomotive was allocated to Taunton for most of its life before ending up at Westbury shed in May 1949.

Photo: Taunton Trains Collection

GWR 4-4-0 Bulldog No.3378 'River Tawe' stands at Taunton on a local stopping service. This locomotive had its name removed in 1939, so this image predates the above date. This image has been extensively repaired from a glass plate hi resolution scan and rebuilt for viewing, in the editing of this image it was decided to remove the corner of the canopy from the image as it was too far gone to digitally repair.

Photo: Taunton Trains Collection

GWR 4-6-0 'Star' No.4054 'Princess Charlotte' is pictured at Taunton on the 5th September 1949 just three years later the locomotive was taken out of service and scrapped.

Photo: DK Jones Collection

British Railways 4-6-0 No.4079 'Pendennis Castle' passes through Taunton on the 31st May 1952 carrying the head code 823. This working it thought to be the Saturdays Only 10:55 Birmingham - Paignton service.

Photo: DK Jones Collection

This image of a GWR 4-6-0 'Castle' is thought to be No.4087 'Cardigan Castle' While it can't be fully confirmed the numbers 408 can clearly be seen on the buffer beam, and 4087 also had a Hawksworth Tender. The train also has clerestorie coaches which also assists with the identification. Depending on the date of the image the working would of either been the 11:10 Paddington - Penzance or 09:30 Paddington - Newquay.

Photo: Taunton Trains Collection

GWR 4-6-0 'Castle' No.5039 'Rhuddlan Castle' is pictured at Taunton. The locomotive was built in June 1935 and clocked up 1,380,564 miles of running before withdrawal in 1964.

Photo: Taunton Trains Collection

GWR 2-6-2 Small Prairie Tank No.5571 was allocated to Taunton (83B) Shed, it's pictured here on a local passenger service at Taunton Station.

Photo: Taunton Trains Collection

GWR 4-6-0 No.6020 King Henry IV stands at Taunton with an express passenger service to London Paddington.

Photo: Taunton Trains Collection

This image has been possibly traced as either GWR 4-6-0 No.6900 'Abney Hall' or No.6901 'Arley Hall'. The locomotive is pictured being serviced at Taunton. The locomotives first shed allocation was Tyseley but was later changed to Bristol, St. Philip's Marsh.

Photo: Taunton Trains Collection

A BR 2-8-0 8F No. 48520 passes light engine through the up Platform at Taunton. This loco possibly worked to Bridgwater with the Saltney Tanks for British Cellophane and had gone to Taunton to be turned,the loco was for many years in early 60's allocated to 8C Speake Junction,this working often produced a Midland Loco,Saltney being near Chester.

Photo: Taunton Trains Collection

BR 4-6-2 Stanard Class 7 No.70017 'Arrow' is pictured paused at Taunton. The locomotive was built in 1951 and later scrapped by 1966 at just 15 years old.

Photo: Taunton Trains Collection

This image shows an LMS Pacific 'Duchess' heading north through Taunton. From our own reaserch with local enthusiasts from the time, we have narrowed this locomotive down to one of three, No.46236 'City of Bradford' operated in 1948 exchanges, this would make this image the 18th May 1948 on the return run from Exeter, the dynamometer car would of been on the rear of this train.

Photo: Taunton Trains Collection

BR Standard 9F, No.92055 is pictured operating a Taunton - Cardiff between Creech At Michael and Cogload Junction on the 5th August 1961.

Photo: Taunton Trains Collection

A BR 2-6-0 Mogal stands at the end of its life in one of the short down sidings. It's smokebox and cabside numbers are removed and BR embelem removed from the tender. There is a firm date of the 24th June 1964 when this image was taken, and from 'spotting notes' of the time Mike Pollard was able to confirm this was No.7332

Photo: Taunton Trains Collection

GWR 4-6-0 Castle No.5079 'Lysander' is pictured at Taunton with an express service to the West Country from Paddington.

Photo: Norman Simmons