Preston Station - Past & Present
The WLR - Hoole

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pic1The down side nameboard at Hoole in 1964, a relic that dates from LMS days. Despite the fact that all the station paintwork is faded and flaking and the wooden-edged cinder platform appears to be rapidly succumbing to the encroaching open grassland beyond, porter-signalman Ernie Snell of Walmer Bridge and his colleagues have been determined that the flower beds in the vicinity of the signal-box are kept in good order right up until closure and this fact has been commented upon by many intending travellers. Ernie has been at Hoole for 11 years and, in the past, has been instrumental in the station receiving awards in the annual London Midland Region Best-Kept Station competitions.
(c) Alan Castle6th September 1964

pic2A very rare visitor to the line, indeed the first of its type to have been seen in over 12 months, is a 'Jubilee' 3-cylinder 4-6-0 No. 45642 "Boscawen", photographed leaving the lonely windswept outpost of the South Lancashire mosslands at Hoole on 5th September 1964 at the head of the 13-17 Southport - Preston stopper. Even in the closing years of the West Lancs line, apart from the Crossens electrics, all services, goods and passenger, have remained steam-hauled and, assisted by the once numerous inter-regional excursions, for observers there has continued to be an interesting and very varied selection of motive power in use.
(c) Alan Castle 5th September 1964

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