4 thoughts on “Weigh cabin and coal cells, Billingham Station c1964

  1. In North Eastern Railway Company days, prior to 1923, the railway would often appoint its station masters as coal agents for the surrounding district and this could be a very lucrative sideline for the station master. They would be expected to promote and ‘push’ sales in their area. So much so, that some station masters reportedly declined promotion to bigger and busier stations, claiming that they would actually be worse off by such a move.

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  2. I remember the coal cells well I used to push an old pram from Lomond Avenue to them, where a man would fill a sack and put it in the pram. The gentleman was totally deaf. Anybody could buy coal there. Many times I went into the station for a warm coal fire in my spotting days from 1948 to 57, my favourite engine was the D20 that westinghouse pump hissing away.

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    • The D20’s were good engines Peter.The last one was withdrawn in 1957,about the time you stopped “spotting”. In their last years they were mainly shedded at Alnmouth, a sub shed of 52D, Tweedmouth, and worked into Newcastle from Anwick. By 1957 they were a rare sight through Billingham, and I can’t remember actually seeing one. Unfortunately my only experience of them came in about 1959, when exploring the scrapyard at North Road, Darlington. A number were still there, in pieces, with their numbers on the cab side, along with a number of D49’s. Building of the class began in 1899, which gives a good indication of the quality of these locomotives. Nearly sixty years old, before withdrawal.

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  3. I think smokeless fuel had been introduced by 1964.If so, the deliveries to the yard would have been mainly coke, although some coal would still be required. The goods yard itself closed in 1978, some twelve years after the station moved to it’s present position. How long the coal yard remained open,I’m not sure, but my mother was using a different coalman by 1965, and he came from Bishop Auckland. During the 1950’s we used the company (possibly the co op), that got their coal from Billingham coal yard. I remember taking a note down occasionally to the cabin in the photograph, when my parents needed to change the order (no telephone in those days). There must have been deliveries of coal by rail on Saturdays, because I remember going to the matinee at Billingham picture house on Saturday afternoons, and seeing a J26 orJ27 pushing coal wagons up the incline,to the drops,but it was not a common sight. I was an ardent train spotter in the 1950’s and early 60’s, and up to the time the London Brick company came there in about 1961/62, there was very little activity in the yard, neither general goods or coal.

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