Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Steam Powered the Last Great Age of the Railways

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Steam Powered the Last Great Age of the Railways

Article excerpt

Byline: Lee Maddison lee.maddison@trinitymirror.com

DURING the 1940s and 1950s, Eric Ulliott worked on the railways and, for him, this was its last great era - the age of steam.

After serving his time as signal lad at Thornaby East he was appointed relief signalman, covering Northallerton to West Hartlepool, to the Guisborough junction at Middlesbrough.

"Northallerton's signal box was bang up to date, all electric, completed just before the Second World War, no manual levers, just the flick of a switch," Eric told Remember When in 2003.

"It was always very busy with main-line express trains thundering passed night and day and heavy goods traffic in and out of Teesside."

At 19, Eric was appointed signalman at Yarm. Under normal circumstances he would have been too young, 21 being the normal age requirement, but this was wartime and normal rules did not apply.

A retired ex-signalman called Alf Herrington was also drafted in so Eric and he made up the North-east's oldest and the youngest signal box team. …

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