Laindon Station and Goods Yard.

In the time of Steam Trains.

By Nina Humphrey(née Burton)

A photograph of Laindon Station taken from an interesting angle.  Facing west towards the railway bridge, with the goods loading bay to the right.   Steam train puffing its way through the station between the platforms.  A bus/coach waiting outside the ticket office.  Some interesting parked vehicles and at least four identical lorries in the goods yard.

Some questions come to mind.

  1. Who was the photographer?
  2. What was he standing on?
  3. What year was it taken?

The answers would be most welcome, in addition to any other available information.

Note: Click on photograph to enlarge the image.

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Photo: Illustrative image for the 'Laindon Station and Goods Yard.' page

Ordnance Survey. c.1947

This page was added by Nina Humphrey(née Burton) on 11/09/2017.
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So now it's Richard "Hawkeye" Haines?

By Donald Joy
On 15/09/2017

Well done again Richard.  Good observation, I’m sure you are bang on with your suggestion.

By Nina Humphrey(née Burton)
On 15/09/2017

Nina, looking at the OS Map 1947 you will see two dots at the right hand end of the station platform (east). These are marked SPs and are signal posts. These had ladders for regular maintenance of the signal arms and lamps by the signal crews. I believe the cameraman was given access to the ladders to take this wonderful photograph.

By Richard Haines
On 15/09/2017

Well done Richard for identifying the bus.  I loved the Eastern National buses.  I enjoyed those bus rides to school in the mornings (I think the fare was 2d).  Starting at Sizer’s and finishing by whizzing down Church Hill to the bus stop at the bottom.

We sometimes went on Eastern Nation coach’s day trip excursions to Kent.  These started from the forecourt of The Laindon Hotel and the coach drove onto the ferry to cross the Thames before the Dartford tunnel was opened.  I think the ferries were called the Minnie and the Tessa.

I also remember going to Farnborough Air Show in the fifties on an Eastern National Coach from the Laindon Hotel.  Now that was a long journey.  Such memories!!

By Nina Humphrey(née Burton)
On 15/09/2017

Nina, I've blown the picture up now and can clearly see the Morris Minor Traveller, certainly this must be a mid fifties photograph, taking the Fordson Thames lorries into account as well. The bus outside the station is a Bristol single decker, owned by Eastern National and probably timed to wait for the train. It would have probably been on the Laindon Circular route, similar to the journeys we made to school, me at Laindon Park and you at Markhams Chase. As far as I can remember my Mum bought our coal from the Co-op lorries following on from my Nan's tradition in Barking.

By Richard Haines
On 15/09/2017

My brother saw this photo and wondered whether there had been another footbridge at one time, where the photographer could have been standing.  Does anybody remember?
The Morris traveller that’s parked was introduced in 1952 which dates the picture probably mid fifties.

By Nina Humphrey(née Burton)
On 15/09/2017

I would just like to suggest that the coal lorry in this photo is a Bedford (model unknown) operated by Morris and Farmer. I say this because I've blown up the photo as much as I can before losing too much definition and then attacking it with a large magnifying glass. This in itself does not allow me to actually read the words but does show that the name is two words that look very much like Morris & Farmer. 

Any suggestions as to what the ovoid white spot surrounded by a paler coloured ring on the wall of the building is? Could it be or have been a company logo or advert ? Should have made this clearer, just to the left of the large white doors behind the new lorries. 

By Donald Joy
On 14/09/2017

Thanks for that Richard.  The photo is easier to see now that the image has been enhanced.  Still can’t make out the writing on the side of the coal lorry, although several companies had their depots at the station over the years including, Hayes Fuels, Morris & Farmer and A.H. Hall. Other coal merchants in Laindon were A.J. Gibbons of 'Whitethorn', High Road. Turners in Denbigh Road. J.C. Young, Coal & Coke. The Co-op and also Charringtons which was between the Laindon Hotel and Toomeys.

By Nina Humphrey(née Burton)
On 13/09/2017

Nina I think the four lorry chassis in the yard are Fordson Thames types from about 1955-57. This would date the photograph from around that time. The train would have been hauled by a black 2-6-4 Standard tank engine from British Railways days, the carriages all slam door type compartment stock in maroon. Remarkable the lack of people and cars around the station buildings and yards, bit different to the busy scene of today's Laindon Station.

By Richard Haines
On 13/09/2017

The four identical lorries in the goods yard are all brand new vehicles. They would have been referred to as "chassis cabs" as they were as described just the cab and the chassis as can be seen in the picture. They would have been due to go off to the coachbuilders to have their bodies constructed and fitted. Probably to Laindon Body Works just over the bridge on the way to Langdon Hills or to Coles Body Builders along the A127 between Pound Lane and Church Road. 

It's a shame I can't enlarge the picture enough and maintain the clarity to be able to read the writing on the door of the coal lorry. An interesting photo. 

By Donald Joy
On 12/09/2017

Hi Nina, the photo from Laindon station must be looking west towards the bridge. I guess the picture must be in the 1940's by the look of the lorries. I lived near the station and remember it well. I have some photos in the early 1960's so will try and find them to compare the details. The newer signal box when I travelled to Westcliff daily from 1961 was further east on the centre platform and not so close to the waiting rooms. Great  photo. Patsy Mott

Editor: Thanks Patsy - I have made the amendment. (Never was good at directions!)

By Patsy Mott
On 11/09/2017