For nearly 100 years signalmen and telegraph lads at Grantham South signal box kept watch over the running lines, the yards and the sidings which lay south of the passenger station. The box was staffed round the clock, seven days a week. What stories it might have told of the characters who worked it, and some of the incidents they dealt with!
Although the building is long gone, former Grantham signalling staff have generously shared their memories and photographs. We've also researched local newspapers and explored other sources to illustrate the work of signalmen and telegraph lads at Grantham South.
The stories include:
- an insight from Victorian times into the harsh and, from a modern perspective, negligent attitude of the railway companies to the personal safety of their employees;
- the tale of a horse which made a bid for freedom by charging along the main line as far as Great Ponton;
- how, one September night in 1906, two men on duty at the South Box were the first to witness the Scotch mail train emerge from the darkness as it sped towards the station out of control to meet with destruction a few seconds later;
- a surprising episode in the summer of 1911, during a national dispute over working conditions on the railways, when the South Box was surrounded by a riotous mob which had to be dispersed by police.
Read all of this and more in our latest new page Grantham South signal box - people and incidents .