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Miscellaneous: Operating Equipment & Practices

Signalling Procedure: misc_equip252 and misc_equip252a

The system was later augmented with an authorising Ticket to become the ‘Train Staff and Ticket’ system

To increase flexibility the Train Staff system (described in 'misc_equip251'), it was augmented with an authorising Ticket and became the ‘Train Staff and Ticket’ system. The system was designed to prevent head-on collisions and could be used without communication between the two ends of the single line section. Different coloured Train Tickets, pre-printed with the section details were provided to ensure these were correctly identified. There were two operational options dependent upon the direction of travel of the following train:

a) Where the next train would pass in the opposite direction to the first train, the driver would be given both the train staff while a completed ticket authorising the journey would be locked in a secure Ticket Box in the Signal box using a key fixed to the end of the train staff.

b) Where the next train would be in the same direction to the first train, the procedure would be similar with a completed ticket written to authorise the journey and locked in the secure Ticket Box, but in this case the driver would only be shown the section’s Train Staff and it would be retained by the Signalman. This would allow the Signalman to authorise a further train with another ticket to follow the first train after a predetermined presumed safe time interval. At this point the Signalman would either; continue to retain, or give the Driver, the Train Staff, depending on the direction of the next train timetabled to use the line.

By 1865 the procedure had changed, such that the Driver was required to carry the authorising ticket and the locked Ticket Box was used to store all unissued tickets, so that only a Signalman with the train staff and key could issue another ticket. The scan above shows an extract from the Great Western Railway’s ‘Regulations for Train Signalling on Double and Single Lines’, which was issued in 1936 detailing part of the relevant section on the operation of the ‘Train Staff and Ticket’ system on Single Lines. Note that the specimen ticket is neither pre-printed with the route, nor on coloured paper. None of the Great Western Railway’s single lines in Warwickshire have been identified as using this Train Staff and Ticket system, but the system was enhanced following developments in telegraph technology to become the Train Staff and Ticket Block system (see misc_equip253).

Robert Ferris

The system was later augmented with an authorising Ticket to become the ‘Train Staff and Ticket’ system