It is hard to imagine a time when railway workers made newspaper headlines for breaking records, rather than failing to brake for signals. After Dolly died in and was buried at Minffordd, Bill was cared for in Birmingham by his daughter Irene and her family. A hell, though, without the fire and smoke that made the days of Bill Hoole a heaven for steam men of all ages, all classes. Highlight search term Save Cite Email Share. Subscribe Access to the full content requires a subscription. Bill Hoole at the Centenary of Steam, Driver Hoole’s normal locomotive in British Railways days was “Sir Nigel Gresley”, and it was with “Number 7” he achieved the official post war steam speed record of mph on 23rd May

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Passengers flooded out on to the platform to see the engine but the stop was just to pick up a pilotman for the road via Lincoln, so driver Hoole whistled hard and eased the locomotive slowly forward, which sent people scurrying back on board.

He knew Allan Garraway who introduced him to the Ffestiniog Railway and on retirement after his exploits Bill moved in the Summer of that year to North Wales and started a second career as a driver for the FR Co. In eengine quiet unassuming way he always had time to answer every bll, pose for every camera and help everyone who needed help. Does anyone know which church Eric Treacy was vicar of in Edge Hill?

Eric Treacy – the Right Reverend railway photographer

This is the story of the ‘official’ post war record for Steam Traction of mph. The 90mph limit had been raised after Stevenage by 10mph for this special. In steam still reigned supreme on East Coast expresses but diesel traction was already on the horizon and in this Indian summer some of the finest steam running of all time was produced.


He married Dolly Ratley in who was the youngest daughter of Tom Ratley with whose family he lodged in Neasden before and after the war. Organisation started as early as Novemberwhen No.

He died suddenly in on Appleby Station while photographing the locomotive Evening Star. After all, he caused the infamous crash.

He felt a real respect for them and this lead to his interest in trains.

Bill Hoole: Engineman Extraordinary by P. W. B. Semmens (Paperback, ) | eBay

He passed out as a driver at Neasden in He also took a wonderful picture of Hoole – an engine driver worshipped by a bishop. How fitting, and yet ironic, that it was Evening Star that he was photographing at the time. The rest of the down run was uneventful but a tremendous reception was given to the train on arrival at Doncaster.

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A hell, though, without the fire and smoke that made the days of Bill Hoole a heaven for steam men of all ages, all classes. On April 30,he ploughed the Cannonball express into a freight train at Vaughan, Mississippi. I also read a copy of Peter Smith’s excellent Footplate Over the Mendips, a thoughtful account of what it was like to be a young fireman working with remarkably spirited fellow enginemen on the saw-tooth-graded Somerset and Dorset line, just before the end of steam and, in this case, the end of the line itself.

Sign In or Create. Treacy rarely took unplanned shots, the equipment and large glass negatives being too expensive for acting on impulse. Indeed, within the next week Bill had her over the mark again with Jack Boston on the footplate. Without this it is likely that a hoope higher speed would have been achieved through Grantham than the 75mph to 80mph reported by different recorders.


At the controls of Mallard sibling Sir Nigel Gresley, he hoile an enthusiasts’ special up to mph before the traction inspector riding with him signalled that enough was enough.

Bill Hoole – Grantham Collision – The LNER Encyclopedia

Legend says he was also recorded at mph by innaccurate PW measuring equipment. A much admired and loved engine and union man, he retired only to work as a driver on the narrow-gauge Ffestiniog Railway in north Wales.

Views Read Edit View history. On the footplate Bill Hoole is understood to have turned to the officials present and said, “Are we going to do it? A Fitting Tribute C. A’steamin’ and a’ridin’ at up to 75mph, he “disregarded signals given by Flagman Newberry”, according to the official inquiry report. As an artist I am looking to use one with permissions. Hoole loved steam, and speed, and was quietly proud of egnine enthusiasm for the railways he generated.

The plaque carried by to commemorate the event. With the prospect of mph on the return journey, those on the footplate were left in no doubt about the speedometer’s error when the train arrived at Doncaster! The climb to Potter’s Bar was cleared with steam to spare at just over 60mph, at the time a blanket speed restriction of 60mph applied south of Potter’s Bar. Much debate went on about the details of the trip, and engien particular the speed that it would be allowed to reach.