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Dig Deeper – Railways

Dig Deeper

Sidney and the goods van


First on the railway aged 17. Note LMS uniform

First week on the railway aged 17 years. Note LMS uniform

Trains used to be the main goods carriers before the rise of motorways and lorries. The fields around Willington were important for nursery-grown flowers so boxes of bulbs and flowers were regularly loaded onto trains at the station.

Sidney Cave worked as a porter at Willington Station between 1948 and 1949. He talks about the circus train and late-night tariff train, which carried everything from flowers to coffins, and the day the vinegar barrel ran amok. Click to hear Sidney Cave

Find out more about Bedford River Valley Park’s old railway line