Heritage Railway

Former colleagues recall fireman known as ‘the colonel’

WHILE much of the recent attention about the fatal fire on the footplate of Britannia No. 70051 Firth of Forth has understandably and rightly centred on the driver, Wallace Oakes, some thoughts of railwaymen from the time of the tragedy have also turned to the fireman, Gwilym Roberts.

Wallace died from terrible burns a week after a blowback on the footplate of the Pacific on June 5, 1965, when the Carlisle-bound express was travelling at 55mph through Winsford station north of Crewe. The 33-year-old former LMS man

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from Heritage Railway

Heritage Railway7 min read
It’s A One-horse Race As Canadian Pacific Gallops Ahead At Stoneleigh Auction
IN what was a clear one-horse race at Great Central’s March 2 Stoneleigh auction, Southern Railway Merchant Navy nameplate Canadian Pacific – considered by many collectors to be the best name in the class due to its railway connotations – went under
Heritage Railway1 min read
Moors Class 25 D7628 Regains Headcodes Thanks To Equipment Donation
A SMALL but authentic update has been made to the North Yorkshire Moors Railway’s hard-working Class 25 D7628 during the course of winter maintenance, with the refitting of its headcode blinds, which were used to display the reporting or classificati
Heritage Railway11 min read
With Full Regulator Locomotive Performance Then And Now
THIS time I am covering the successful return of popular A1 No. 60163 Tornado to the main line after a difficult period of nearly 11 months following the hiatus on the East Cost Main Line last April. As this year is the tenth anniversary of its first