From Nationalisation to Privatisation

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My Life on British Railways

By Jack A Turner

"It is truly a social history as well as one man's railway career." Peter Rayner in the Foreword.

Jack Turner is an Aylesbury-born man. He spent 46 years working for British Railways, starting at Aylesbury High Street in 1947 as a goods clerk. He subsequently became a steam locomotive fireman, a relief signalman and finished up as a senior operations manager, based at London Euston and responsible for the well-being of all the signal boxes on a 90 mile section of trunk line between Euston, Northampton and Rugby. 

His career was played out against the backdrop of the most radical changes that have ever happened on the domestic railway sysatem from nationalisation, the 1955 Modernisation Plan and the 1963 Beeching Report, right through to the time leading up to privatisation of the network in the early 1990s.  

Of particular interest to Harpenden readers, are the years Mr Turner spent as a relief station master on the Midland main line from London St Pancras to Bedford between 1964 and 1968. He spent a lot of his time at Harpenden Midland and his duties involved overseeing nearby Harpenden East.

The book also describes an illicit trip that he made by diesel train along the Nicky Line to Cupid Green, this taking place following the closure of the route to regular trains.   

The book itself is a softback A5 size publication, illustrated and 226 pages in length, price £14.

Copies of the book are available from the publishers, Jacett Publications

Further details from

This page was added by Rosemary Ross on 29/04/2014.

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