Photographs from Toton Sidings Project


A community project 2016 - 2018

supported by Heritage Lottery Fund

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Toton Sidings from Ernest Hallam's Snapshot Album looking north (Brian Heath)

This picture includes gas lighting and a water tower. In the background we are looking towards Stapleford but there is not much sign of housing. The large number of wagons waiting to leave or to be marshalled is well represented.

Toton Sidings from Ernest Hallam's Snapshot Album looking south (Brian Heath)

Here we are looking the other way with Long Eaton in the distance. The Downside Control Tower is clearly visible with the fan of down sidings. Note the gasometer - a feature of all towns in the 50s. I remember a wonderful morning when our Year 3 chemistry class were shown around the local gasworks in Bury St Edmunds. We had already tried the distillation of coal in the lab so we were really appreciative of the large scale version.


WW1 Gun in passage through Toton 1916 (National Railway Museum)

An impressive bit of cargo at Toton during WW1. Toton, of course, played a vital part in both world wars and in WW2 was a prime target for bomber raids from Nazi Germany. We were told by a local resident that during WW2, Toton switched off its floodlights before the air raid siren went off giving observant locals a chance to 'beat the rush' for the shelters.

Up Hump Buildings (John Redgate)

This picture was taken from the bank towards the loco depot (18A). Note the textile mill chimneys in the background & the Robin Reliant three wheeler. It was the textile Industry (particularly lace) that caused a huge expansion of Long Eaton in the 19th century.

Group with tank engine around 1914 (Michael Goodjohn)

In 1914 Toton Sidings was an important part of the Midland Railway. Notice the shunters here all wearing company uniforms complete with 2 rows of buttons. No sign of a brake stick here though, while beards and moustaches seem quite popular!

Mr Hallam in Younger Days (Brian Heath)

The faded sepia hue, the studied poses and dress all point to a bygone age! Mr Hallam (centre) is the youngster here. Note the pipe and neckwear and the unbuttoned Midland Railway uniform (hot day?!)

Shunter Group (c 1922) (Alan Galinski)

This is the year my house in Sandiacre was built (then a cottage!) The group Includes Stanley Tilling (3rd from L) who went on to be a guard, retiring in 1970. He was the guard of the mineral train which suffered a collision with an oncoming train hauled by a diesel loco in December 1968 at Stanton Gate. He escaped without injury. Note the brake sticks and the clear sense of comradeship in this group.

Shunters in Fancy Dress (Alan Galinski)

Taken around 1933, this photo shows Stan Tilling skylarking. No information on the occasion is available but we know from Bill Roy's recording project that Toton Sidings had a very active and well supported set of social and sporting societies including a successful quiz team!

H E Lemmon Guard 1910 - 1925 (Rex Wyatt, grandson)

Herbert was a guard based at Toton in the days of the Midland Railway. His health was failing towards the end of his service for the railway and the MR arranged for him to spend some time at Buxton Spa to try to alleviate his worsening condition. He died in 1925 leaving a widow and 6 children. Photo provided by grandson.

William Carr Guard (Anthony Carr, son)

I really like this picture showing William who worked at Toton from 1924 to 1965. I bet he could tell a few tales especially serving during the war years. He experienced the effect of nationalisation of the railways in 1948 and saw the steep decline of steam in his last years on the railway. We forget just how far the goods guard was from the locomotive (and remember that in those days there was no comms available).

Toton Guards John Woolley)

This picture was provided by John Woolley whose father George is one of the 3 likely lads shown. The poses are intriguing and full of character.. so very different from the usual broad smiles of today's Facebook images!

George Woolley, devoted servant of the railway (John Woolley)

George started at Toton as a shunter and went on to serve as goods guard for many years. He was very well thought of by his comrades .. reliable, steady and hard working.. His son John has been an enthusiastic supporter of our project and brought in his father's guards lamp to one of our early Open Days

Joe Hallam (Geoff Birkin)

Joe Hallam is the figure on the left in this old photo. The engine is an outside framed 0-6-0 goods locomotive.

Reginald Townsend (Kay Bridge, duaghter)

Reginald was a driver based at Toton from 1931 to 1971. Here we see him at the controls of a Peak Class 4 diesel.

Ernest Meads (Brenda Heydinger, daughter)

Ernest had a long career at Toton rising through the driver ranks through fireman to engine driver. Here we see him on the footplate of an 8F goods loco, a vital and powerful member of the fleet serviced and stabled at Toton shed. Daughter Brenda has memories of her father whistling as he walked down the garden path after a day on the railways and also the Toton engine whistles blowing that marked the start of every New Year.

Charlie Gammon (Jean Clark, daughter)

Here we see Charlie (L) with mates. The family were pleased to come across this picture in a book they were browsing and kindly brought a copy in to our LE Library Open Day in 2017. Charlie was often heard remarking on foul weather that it was "not fit to turn a dog out"!

8F Line up at Toton (Sean Madden)

The 8F freight locos formed a major part of the motive power at Toton shed. They were designed by Stanier at Derby. I taught his grandson at Trent College!

Toton Shed in MR days (Sean Madden)

This picture of Toton sheds is looking towards Long Eaton. On the left can be seen a waiting Beyer-Garratt loco. Note there is only one track entering the shed. The shed had a roundhouse where locos were stabled round a central turntable. Each loco would be turned before leaving the shed.

8F passing southbound through Stapleford & Sandiacre Station (Sean Madden)

The bridge shown here carries the Derby Road over the railway. Stapleford (and Bethel Lane) is to the right of the picture. This loco has arrived at Toton with a train of coal-filled wagons. It is about to turn into the arrival lines where it will uncouple and cross over the main lines to go on shed.

Winter Flooding (John Woolley)

I think this shot of extreme flooding was taken looking north from the Derby Road bridge referred to in the previous image.Two goods trains arrive at Toton for marshalling. The huge amount of traffic arriving at Toton often caused big problems as the yards tried to catch up with demand. Trains would queue for hours at a time waiting to be admitted to the yards.