Jeff Jones relates his memories of Broad Green station

Resource Type: Audio | Posted on 12th September 2011 by Liam Physick

Jeff Jones recalls how, as a boy, he would sneak into Broad Green station, watch the trains go past through the window in the waiting room, and get warmed by the fire in winter. He also mentions that there was a goldfish pond there as well! At night, Jeff and his friends would cling onto the station railings, until tank locomotive 4471 came by, with its fireman hoespiping hot water! In another incident, a boy climbed up the main pillar of the bridge over Thomas Lane, and the station master sent a young porter to pursue the miscreant, threatening to sack him if he failed to catch the boy. Jeff finishes by expressing the hope that Edge Hill engine shed may be used once again, and that workshops might be set up here

Interviewee: Jeff Jones

Interviewee Gender: Male

Interview Transcript

Jeff: I mean, you know, Broad Green station, I was always in there, cos in those days there were four lines going through Broad Green station, and we used to get in the central platform, you know, on the central platform, there was a waiting room with glass either side so you could see what was coming, and you could feel it and you could hear it, and it used to be a ruddy big coal fire in there and all . . .

Margi: Yeah.

Jeff: . . . it was great in the winter . . . cos nobody would disturb you, you know, if you weren’t getting up to mischief, the station master wouldn’t chase you, I mean, I was looking at a, I was looking at a picture there, and I saw Broad Green station and there used to be, next to the signal box, there was a, there actually a pond with goldfish in it . . .

Margi: Yeah.

Jeff: . . . can you imagine that these days?

Margi: Well, you can’t.

Jeff: Cos there’s no such thing, is there, you know?

Margi: Yeah.

Jeff: But, another thing was, when we were, we used to, where the Jehovah’s chapel is now on the, by, by the, the Broadgreen Thomas Lane side of thing . . .

Margi: I know, yeah.

Jeff: . . . on that side, we used to cling on to the railings, if we didn’t go on the station, get trains – this is at night, you see, I don’t thing they’d let us on, you know, sort of, tea time, that sort of thing, cos we’d get in the way of the passengers – and there always used to be one – and I think it was 4471, tank engine, and the fireman always used to hosepipe hot water over the water, “Here it is, get out of the way!”, and we’d all scatter, you know (Margi laughs), see the water coming over (laughs). That was like it was, you know, it was good, good day . . .

Margie: That’s brilliant, yeah, the things you could get up to.

Jeff: . . . but the main pillar of the, the bridge over Thomas Lane, one of the lads got up on there and the station master sent – can’t remember his name now – a young lad who was a porter, cos there was porters in that, in those days, sent him round to get him and, when the lad saw him coming, he got down and run. The, the station master said to the porter, “If you come back without him, you’ve lost your job” (Margi gasps), he caught him on Childwall Valley Road, he ran right round all of that way . . .

Margi: Yeah.

Jeff: . . . and he got him, brought him back . . .

Margi: Wow!

Geoff: . . . it was a telling-off, but it was (indecipherable) in those days, you didn’t do that sort of thing . . .

Margi: Yeah . . .

Jeff: . . . you know . . .

Margi: . . . that’s right, yeah.

Jeff: . . . one of those things . . .

Margi: Yeah.

Jeff: . . . good days! (laughs)

Margi: Oh that’s brilliant! Oh, well, thanks for sharing that with us, Jeff . . .

Jeff: OK, yeah.

Margi: . . . really, really interesting . . .

Jeff: Yeah, good.

Margi: . . . and I hope your dream does come true!

Jeff: Well, I, it, I, I mean, I think we, I think we’re on for something, for something here, we’re really into . . .

Margi: Yeah.

Jeff: . . . getting Edge Hill sorted, want this, this place done, look, you know . . .

Margi: Yeah.

Jeff: . . . I mean, there could be workshops over there . . .

Margi: That’s it.

Jeff: . . . for kids who wanna learn how to do rail . . .

Margi: Yeah.

Jeff: . . . (indecipherable) trains . . .

Margi: Yeah.

Jeff: . . . and God knows what, you know, there’s loads of room in that engine shed, I mean, they used to have, refit locos and carriages and God knows what in there . . .

Margi: Yeah.

Jeff: . . . why can’t they do it again?

Margi: Exactly, well, let’s hope you . . .

Jeff: Yeah.

Margi: . . . do get the ball rolling and, good luck with it.

Jeff: (in a determined voice) We’ll try, we’ll try! (laughs)

Tagged under: edge hill station, railway workers, tank locomotives, firemen, station master, broad green station, porters, engine shed, thomas lane bridge, thomas lane

Categorised under: Landmarks, Landscapes & Locomotives

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