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Simon's Mystery Photos


Last updated 26 June 2007, recent material marked by New Item

Can you help identify answer the questions about these photos? If so please contact . Thanks

1. Dennington

D2 Albion

Question: Where is the location?

Peter Collins: At a guess I would say the location was Hove. My reasoning for this is the building behind the loco, particularly the scalloped eaves- which show up in my copy - are the same as found in the photo of D1 Kidbrooke - no 29 in Middleton's Brighton to Worthing - again a clearer copy. This would place the train standing in the Loop platform facing westwards. The headcode I believe shows a Brighton to Dyke train.

Mike Waldron: Yes, but the platform front edge is very new looking. That makes me think that it has undergone some work recently. Unless the large building in the background is known to have been there, and demolished, I don't remember seeing anything like that on the way to school on the Horsham flyer every morning in the 1960's! There's a photo in the Middleton "Brighton to Worthing" book that might shed some light on the location - as I believe it shows such a loco there. Isn't there a road bridge under there somewhere?
I agree there is ample cause for thinking it is Hove with those sidings there, but I'm not sure the buffer stops were as tight up to the end of the platform as it would appear here.

New Item Simon Turner: I am now of the opinion that Dennington IS at Hove.

2. Seine

D2 Albion

Question: Where is the location?

Mike Waldron: Look in the Book by Middleton Press "Haywards Heath to Seaford" - in the section on Newhaven Harbour - at a doublepage-spread continuing on the next page too (immediately after Plate 87) and there is a 1928 Map.
If you were to imaginarily stand just above the goods shed on the right hand page, and look towards the top right, you'd be standing somewhere in the vicinity of a fan if sidings (just below as per the map), and if you were to look over the running lines, you'd see some houses. Over the page you see the position of the Hydraulic power tower.
These together seem to suggest to me where 'Seine' is. Bradley states that it was shedded at Newhaven during the 1890's (as well as 1923) The photo is possibly dated around the 1890's. That might suggest that the likely activity of the Loco is either sorting, or about to head out a local goods train. The presence of the yard lamp suggests that location is ........... a yard!
I grant you that the sidings are rather 'messy' - not the ordered place one light expect - but, as Nick Wellings commented at the AGM in the dark, these look very much like Nautical chains. The track in the foreground does suggest (though no more than that) a fan of sidings, and the loco would be most likely to be on the feed-in end of those - as the position of Seine is at such an angle (see the map).
Notice that there is a signal post signified on the map - on the far side of the running lines, though I cannot quite work out the reason for the single distant arm for a branch at that location, if, indeed, it is the Seaford branch being indicated here. It would seem from the map that there are houses in the vicinity behind the running lines, and that the Hydraulic tower would be over to the right.
Returning to the sidings - you note what appears to be a singular lack of track chairs on the right foreground rail! At one time I even questioned whether this might have been at the interchange siding at Chichester - where the Hundred of Manhood and Selsea Light Tramway! Lightly laid spiked track? But I couldn't explain the tower being there!

Peter Collins: I would also endorse that I think Seine is at Newhaven.

Simon Turner: I am intrigued by the concensus that the picture of Seine is at Newhaven. Part of the point of putting these pictures up was to ellicit ideas and in general the ideas have been brilliant i.e. they coincide with mine!
However I don't think Seine is at Newhaven. Without absolute proof , which of course we will never have, I am convinced that it is taken across the very north end of East Croydon yard, the signal that can be seen being on the main line, the houses behind stand to this day.

New Item John Hayes This is definitely Newhaven. See following photo. Note sidings at middle-left of picture. The line to Seaford snakes through the left-hand-side of photo. The lighter houses next to water tower are probably the ones in the background of photo 2. Note, the forward/bachward arrangement of chimneys. These houses have been altered since this photo was taken.

Newhaven from the air

3. Balcombe

D2 Albion

Question: Where is the location?

Peter Collins: I believe the location to be Preston Park. The loco is standing in the Up siding. Maurice Joly told me the footbridge was dismantled in 1890.

4. D1 leaving a station

D2 Albion

Where is the location?

Peter Collins: H.Gordon Tidey shot No.T6075 showing D1 624 leaving Bognor with the 8.30 am/pm? to Brighton.

5. Albion

D2 Albion

Just a nice photo!

David Lowe: There are a couple of points about this photograph that are interesting. First, what looks to be one the footplate crew is wearing a white jacket. Second, some of the coal looks to me as though it could be whitewashed, although that may be no more than the way that the light is falling. According to Hamilton Ellis the headcode indicates a day special from London Bridge to Crystal Palace, but it is clearly not the royal train. I had thought that white was reserved for the latter.

Gerry Nichols: I must admit that the nature of the lighting made me think it was a drizzling wet day - mainly due to the lack of clear shadows. I would think that the dampness would cause the coal to appear white rather than paint. Cannot comment on the white jacket for the footplate staff. The first vehicle is presumably a horsebox but the web image is not clear enought to say whether the lettering on it is LBSC. Now if it was a London Bridge to Crystal Palace special why would it have a horsebox and why would it be at Clapham Junction? Do we have a date for the picture other than 1883 to 1905 which are the dates 312 was in service?

Nick Holliday: I would agree that the weather looks suitably damp and grim and the shine on the coal is just that. I am no expert on headcodes, but a check on the SEMG website which shows, I think, the Hamilton-Ellis information, brings up Victoria/Battersea to Hastings as an alternative, which probably fits the bill better. I realise that the photo is probably earlier than the H-E list, but I wonder whether there were too many changes when it was brought into use. I think it is safe to assume that the horsebox is LBSC as it has a very short wheelbase, which accords with the Stroudley version, and there is enough hint of the lettering to back this up. White jackets were fairly common in early days (The term Fustion come to mind?) so perhaps the driver has kept his in good condition.

Simon Turner: My headcode list compiled in 1897, which incidentally is around the date of the photo, suggests an ordinary day train to Eastbourne or Hastings. I can't quite understand Gerry's inablity to distinguish the identity of the horsebox. I checked my original scan and the image on the website and, I admit I have just spent a fortune on new glasses, both images seem to show ".....&SCR,; .....o.2", which I choose to interpret as "LB&SCR, No.2".

6. Fairbairn

D2 Albion

Question: An unidentified location, but also what is a B2 doing pulling a three coach third/composite/brake formation?

Peter Collins: I would hazard a guess at Polegate on a Lewes to Eastbourne train.

Gerry Nichols: I think Fairbairn is at Polegate Junction on the down main Brighton to Hastings line. Middleton Press Brighton to Eastbourne plate 88 shows the station soon after rebuilding and confirms the style of canopy valancing shown in the photograph. The lamp and seat visible behind the brake van are also consistent with Polegate. I don't think it could have got to this platform from the Hailsham line so it could be a local from Brighton - are we looking at a running-in turn?


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