On Monday, 27 November, Chris and Judy Rouse will talk to Oxfordshire FHS on:
The History of the Midland Railway and its Staff Records
This is a good starting point for research into railway ancestry – using our knowledge of the Midland Railway to provide examples. The speakers provide a brief history of the Midland Railway and then a more in depth look at the various types of records available for researchers: – Staff records held at the National Archives and elsewhere, Board of Trade Accident reports, Directors and other Minutes, Local and National newspapers, census records, photographs, maps and illustrations etc. Researchers can then adapt the techniques to researching their own particular railway ancestor on any British railway.
Chris Rouse, a retired Chartered Accountant has Midland Railway ancestry, including signalmen, platelayers and guards, He has always been keenly interested in researching the history of railways in England and Wales, was one of the first members of the Midland Railway Society, being its Annual President in 2008.He has written a series of articles on early Midland railway accidents, and other subjects relating to the Midland Railway. Judy Rouse, a retired librarian is a Family History researcher of long standing, with ancestry based in Wiltshire, Shropshire and Stafford shire. She is a member of Wilts FHS and amongst other things over the years has answered enquiries on its Monumental Inscriptions Index, and had a period as its General Secretary. Judy also has railway men among her ancestors, in her case working for the Great Western Railway Company, which she has been able to research successfully. She also gives talks and writes articles on her Wiltshire and Shropshire ancestry.
We meet at the Exeter Hall, Oxford Road, Kidlington, OX5 1AB, with the talk starting at 8:00pm. Doors open at 7:15pm, when there will be advisors offering computer and genealogy help, and tea and coffee will be available.
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A write-up of the talk will be put into our Members-Only web site. If the speaker offers a handout (and I don’t know if there will be such), we will ask for permission to make that available in the same way.
A director of the Midland Railway lived in Harpenden in a large Queen house facing Harpenden common, which is today being developed for houses and flats,.
Because of a disagreement between Luton Borough council and the surveyor Stevenson ( brother of Rocket Stevenson ) the line from Luton and London was considerably delayed.
As there was as yet no station at Harpenden This director had his own carriage which was attached to the rear of the train from London and released by a brake man at the top of the incline at the top of Harpenden common and was brought to a halt near a siding where the station now is., and parked in the siding. This was presumably picked up in the morning. A station or halt was later built.
This story was related by a local history speaker (Con Curl ) in Harpenden, at which I was present.
Any chance I could have a copy of the notes from the meeting please? I have Mace ancestors who came from Oxfordshire and ended up in the Midlands, all connected to the railway, but can’t attend the meeting. Thank you.
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