Railway

Station sign
This is the sign which was in use when Winslow station closed on 30 Dec 1967.

Arthur Clear: A Thousand Years of Winslow Life (1888), p.20

In conclusion we can only briefly refer to the events of recent years. In 1841, the Boys' School was built. In 1843, the Town was first lighted with Gas. On the 25th March, 1850, an experimental trip was made on the newly-formed Buckinghamshire Railway, Mr. Brassey, the Contractor, provided a Dinner for the directors and friends, to the number of 150, at Winslow, when Sir Harry Verney spoke, and on the first of May following, the line was opened to Winslow, there being four trains each way daily.

According to Lipscomb, Winslow in the 1840s was a depressed place which had been reduced "to the condition of a mere village", so the arrival of the railway was especially significant.

See Railway proposals 1845 for 3 alternative schemes which would have put Winslow on different routes, but were all abandoned by 1846.


Bucks Herald, 30 Jan 1847: setting up the route

WINSLOW. – OXFORD AND BLETCHLEY RAILWAY. – During the last week Francis Sanders, Esq., agent to the London and North Western Railway Company, and S. B. Dudley, Esq., of Winslow on the part of various proprietors of land, through which the Oxford and Bletchley is about to be constructed, were engaged at the Bell Inn, in determining the claims and adjusting the compensation to be paid to the several owners.  Every thing pertaining to the concern was most agreeably conducted, and the greatest satisfaction to the parties, for whom they were the representatives, was the result of their negotiations.


Bucks Herald, 13 May 1848: death of a worker

WINSLOW. FUNERAL OF A RAILWAY NAVVY.- Lately, at Winslow, the body of John Noyes, late time-keeper to Mr. E. Arblaster, a contractor on the Winslow Line of Railway, was interred in the churchyard.  He was followed by 60 of the railway men, and by nearly 300 of the inhabitants of Winslow, who showed a great respect for deceased, as he bore an excellent character in the situation he filled.  He was in the 30th year of his age.

The surname is given as Nourse in the Civil Registration Index, and can't be traced in the GRO Online Index.


Northampton Mercury, 26 Aug 1848: a setback

SINKING OF A BRIDGE ON THE BUCKINGHAMSHIRE RAILWAY. – The centre pier of a four-arch bridge on the Buckinghamshire Railway at Addington Planks, about two and a half miles from Winslow, sank about two feet on the 17th inst., and it was only by “shoaling up” and propping that it was saved from falling.  It was built on a boggy foundation.   The bridge must come down and be re-built.


Bucks Herald, 30 June 1849: policing

SWEARING SPECIAL CONSTABLES.- Messrs. Tierney and Wilmot were again sworn in as special constables for the Winslow and Buckingham railway lines, and C. Hodgson was sworn in for the Mursley line.


Bucks Herald, 25 Aug 1849: bridge begun

RAILWAY STATION.Considerable progress has been made in erecting the station-house and other buildings on the railway here.  The bridge also over the railway, on the Buckingham road, is begun;  and we understand that the whole line will be completed by the 1st of March next.


Bucks Herald, 22 Sep & 20 Oct 1849: accidents

W I N S L O W. ACCIDENT. – An accident of a serious nature happened at the railway station here last week to two carpenters at work there, a very large door falling down by some means on them, and although much crushed and hurt fortunately no bones were broken.

An accident happened to a labourer, named David Watts, while working on the railway line on Tuesday last, when a large quantity of earth fell on him and broke the poor man’s thigh.  Messrs. Cowley, surgeons, were sent for, and were soon on the spot, and in three-quarters of an hour the bone was set, and the sufferer is going on favourably.   It is a singular fact that this is the only case of broken bones that has happened on the Winslow line since the commencement.


Bucks Herald, 30 March 1850: the railway opens

BUCKINGHAM RAILWAY

This line being now so far advanced that it can be travelled upon, the contractors, Messrs. Brassey and Co., and other gentlemen connected with this undertaking, went over it on Tuesday, last, from Bletchley to Banbury, in a train, consisting of several carriages and on their return stopped at the Winslow station to a dinner, given by the contractors, and which was on the most liberal scale. The whole of the building was very neatly and appropriately decorated for the occasion with flags and laurels. &c. Amongst the former we noticed the following:- Success to the Supporters of the Railway;" "Success to the Bucks Railway;" "Health, Wealth, and Long Life to Thomas Brassey;" and "Success to the Winslow Station."

The dinner was laid out in a handsome tent in the Good's shed, and which consisted of every delicacy of the season; indeed no expense appeared to have been spared on the occasion, and all was arranged under the good management of Mr. Neal. landlord of the Bell Inn, in such an excellent manner as to entitle him to much credit. Shortly after three o'clock, the company, consisting of about 120 gentlemen, sat down to dinner, T. Brassey, Esq., in the chair. Amomg the company, we noticed - Cobb, Esq., Major Dewes, H. Humphreys, Esq., and other Directors, the Rev. W. Fremantle, R. Chandler, Esq., Mayor of Buckingham. - Gough, Esq.. Mayor of Banbury, W. Stone, T. Bartlett. G. Nelson, H. Smith, G.H. Haslop, P. Box and Thomas Swain, Esqrs., of Buckingham; several gentlemen from Brackley; G. Cowley and B. Dudley, Esqrs., and other gentlemen of Winslow and its neighbourhood. After the usual loyal toasts and other appropriate ones had been drank, and some spirited and suitable speeches had been delivered, the chief portion of the company soon after, six o'clock left to return by the train, no doubt highly delighted with their excursion

On Wednesday, a substantial dinner was provided in the same tent, to the sub-contractors, clerks, time-keepers. and all the navvies employed on the line, and they as well as all partook of the contractor's liberality, seemed to be highly delighted. About 600 more of the same class of men employed on this line were likewise entertained at Brackley, on Thursday, with a good substantial repast, and a good allowance of ale.

Winslow station (standing derelict)
Winslow's disused station in 1989, before demolition

Bucks Herald, 11 May 1850: new business

JOSEPH  HOWARD RESPECTFULLY informs the Inhabitants of WINSLOW and the Neighbourhood, that he has made arrangements for a SUPPLY OF COALS, AT WINSLOW STATION WHARF, on the OPENING of the BUCKINGHAMSHIRE RAILWAY, on WEDNESDAY NEXT, the 15th instant, which for Quality and Price he trusts will give general satisfaction, and requests the favour of their Patronage and Support.
J. H. returns his sincere thanks for the very liberal support he has received at AYLESBURY, which concern he will continue as usual.
Aylesbury, May 8, 1850.


Bucks Herald, 31 Aug 1850: another fatality

FATAL ACCIDENT. – On Thursday week, the 22nd instant, a most distressing accident occurred to a poor labourer employed at the Winslow Station of the North Western Railway.   It was the duty of the deceased to attend to the greasing of the wheels of the ballast waggon;  and it appears that he was in the act of doing so, and had examined one side of the train, and, instead of going round it, he passed between two of the waggons, when the train was suddenly put In motion, and the poor fellow was completely crushed.   He was removed, but life was quite extinct.  An inquest was held on the body by Mr. D. P King, coroner, of Buckingham, and a verdict of “Accidental Death” was returned.


Bucks Chronicle, 5 Oct 1850: a boost to trade

WINSLOW CATTLE MARKET.
PERIODICAL SALE OF LIVE AND DEAD FARMING STOCK, &c., &c.
Mr. James King

RESPECTFULLY announces that, at the solicitation of several gentlemen of the Neighbourhood, he has determined on Commencing a Periodical Sale of Farming Stock.
To be held on the WINSLOW CATTLE-MARKET-DAY, the SECOND and FOURTH THURSDAY in EVERY MOKNTH.

T H E   F I R S T   S A L E WILL TAKE PLACE, I N   T H E   M A R K E T,
On Thursday, the 10th day of October, 1850, AT ELEVEN O’CLOCK.

From the situation of Winslow in the centre of a great Stock District, and the facility and cheapness of transit afforded by the Buckinghamshire Railway, it is anticipated that the advantages offered by the establishment of a Periodical Sale are such as to ensure its permanency.
It is requested that gentlemen having Stock to dispose of at these Sales will send particulars thereof, one week prior to the Sale, to the office of the Auctioneer, Market-square, Winslow.
The terms will be very moderate; and everything Sold will be paid for at Three o’Clock the same day.

Winslow, 25th September, 1850.

Bucks Herald, 16 Nov 1850: the first fare dodger

A GENTLEMAN WITHOUT HIS TICKET! – On Tuesday last, Master Eastern was summoned by the Railway Station Master, Stainson, for riding from Winslow to Buckingham, he not having paid his fare. – Fine and costs, £1:10 inflicted. – The defendant paid the money.


Banbury Guardian, 20 Feb 1851: Station Inn opens

THE STATION.- Travellers to and from the Winslow Station have now the advantage of a house of public entertainment, where provisions are attainable.  The Station Inn is now open, and is found both useful and convenient.

RAILWAY LOADING.- The station-yard presents the appearance of a timber depot.   The large fall from the estate of W. S. Lowndes, Esq., at Whaddon, is now in course of transit to London and Sunderland, for Government purposes.


The original Buckinghamshire Railway line ran from Bletchley to Banbury, but the line through to Oxford was opened on 1 July 1851, and it became part of the Oxford to Cambridge route. Winslow was the place for changing trains between the Oxford and Banbury lines until Verney Junction station opened in 1868. The first stationmaster was William Hazelgrove from London, b.1815 or 1816.

A burglary in Winslow in February 1851 was blamed on people being able to come to the town easily from London, so the effects weren't all seen as positive.


The Oxford Journal recorded an "excursion train" on 12 July 1851 from Banbury via Brackley and Buckingham to London which "had about 700 passengers when it left the Winslow station." Here is the advert (Banbury Guardian, 10 July 1851):

London and North Western Railway.
CHEAP  EXCURSION  TRAIN TO THE
G R E A T   E X H I B I T I O N.
From Banbury to London and Back.

An Excursion Train will leave BANBURY for LONDON, on the Afternoon of SATURDAY, the 12th JULY, at Half-past Three o’Clock.

            Leave Banbury, 3.30 pm,  Brackley, 3.45, Leave Buckingham, 4.0  pm, Winslow, 4.15

The Return Train will leave the Euston Square Station on the Evening of the following Tuesday, the 15th July, at 7 o’clock.

Fares from all the above Stations for the Double Journey,
First Class. 7s.         Second Class. 4s. 6d. 

By Order, MARK HUISH.         

NOTE FOR PASSENGERS TO THE CITY – The East and West India Dock Railway is now open, and Passengers may alight at Camden Town and proceed by Rail to Fenchurch Street. Fares from Camden Town to Fenchurch Street: - First Class, 6d; Second Class 4d.


Bucks Chronicle, 18 Oct 1851: alleged theft

This case from the Bucks Quarter Sessions gives an impression of what the station was like in its early days. Jesse Cowley was originally from Castlethorpe, and lived in Buckingham Road in the 1851 Census. Despite the verdict, this incident probably ended his railway career as in 1861 he was a shoemaker in Newport Pagnell.

Jesse Cowley, 35, charged with having, on the 20th day of August last, at Winslow, feloniously stonlen six knives, of the value of two shillings, and six forks, of the value of one shilling, the property of the London and North-Western Railway Company.

Mr. Power prosecuted.  He stated that the prisoner was a porter at the Winslow railway station, and that he had stolen the goods in their transit.

Mr. Browne defended the prisoner.

Charles Gwynne – Am a constable in the railway police; in consequence of information, I was watching at the station at Winslow for a fortnight;  at six o’clock on the morning of the 26th of August the prisoner was unloading some trucks into a waggon, and it went away;  I was then in concealment;  I afterwards saw the prisoner go from the goods-shed to the station-house with some papers;  he afterwards crossed the road leading to Winslow, and then turned back to the goods-shed which he had left about five minutes;  he then got upon the stage and looked about him;  I then saw him crawl upon his hands and knees under the stage and bring out half-a-dozen black handled knives and forks;  he rolled them up in a piece of brown paper, and put them under his jacket, which he buttoned up;  watched him, and he went to his house, about a quarter of a mile off;  when he came back to his work I went to him, and charged him with stealing half-a-dozen knives and forks;  he said “Do you, sir;”   I then took him into custody;  left him in charge of a person named King and went to his house, where I saw his wife, and on searching found half-a-dozen black-handled knives and forks under the sofa cushion;  they resembled those I had seen him take;  as I was taking the prisoner to the lock-up, he told me that he was over head and ears in debt, and that was the reason he took the knives and forks.  [The knives and forks were here produced, as also were some others the policeman had received from George Freeman of Oxford, on the same day the robbery was committed].

Cross examined – The knives and forks were such as those commonly used by men in the same station as the prisoner and myself, and probably in gentlemen’s kitchen;  while watching, I was concealed under some tarpauling with some fowls;  this was in a corner near the goods’ stage;  some parties might have known that I was there;  I went to “roost” about nine o’clock in the evening, and left my place of concealment about eight in the morning;  I was under the tarpauling when I saw the prisoner steal the knives.

By the Court – The knives and forks I found in the prisoner’s houses were quite new, and did not appear to have been used.

Mr. Hazlegrove, the station master at Winslow – I was aware that Gwynne watched the premises under the tarpauling; he did so under my direction;  the prisoner came to me and wanted me to go to the good-shed and look at a parcel;  I did so and a parcel containing knives and forks apparently burst open;  he said the parcel arrived in that state;  told him to make a note on the parcel and also in his book as to the condition in which it arrived;  the parcel was directed to Mr. Freeman, of Oxford, and was forwarded to him the same day.

Cross-examined – The prisoner has been in the employ of the company about 12 months, and had previously borne a good character;  others might have seen the policeman go in and out of the station;  but I do not think he was known to be a “detective.”

Thomas Wood – Am agent to Messrs. Pickford at Oxford;  remember a parcel directed to Mr. Freeman coming to the office on the 21st of August;  it was wrapped up with half-a-dozen knives and forks under the string;  it had evidently been burst;  Mr. Freeman came and examined the parcel and there was half-a-dozen short.

George Freeman – On the 21st of August last I was at Oxford;  I had previously purchased some knives and forks of Mr. Twigg, of Sheffield; on that day, I went to Messrs. Pickford’s office, and found that half-a-dozen black handled knives and forks were missing from the parcel.

William Twigg – Am a manufacturer at Sheffield;  remember receiving an order from George Freeman, for some black handled knives and forks;  sent them, but had not sent any others of that class along that line of railway about that time;  the knives produced are some of those I sent

Cross-examined – I make many thousand knives and forks of the class produced.

Mr. Brown then addressed the jury in behalf of the prisoner, contending that they were not justified in finding the prisoner guilty on the unsupported evidence of the policeman.

Not Guilty.


Oxford Chronicle, 3 Jan 1852: another accident

ACCIDENT.- On Wednesday morning last there was a crash at the Winslow station, caused by the down coal train to Banbury stopping at the station to shunt some trucks to be left.  While the men were so doing the goods train for Oxford came down the same line and went against that portion of the previous train that was standing on it.  On observing that a collision was inevitable, the stoker and fireman jumped from the engine and escaped.  The engine was thrown on its side across the line, the guard’s break was smashed, as were also several of the trucks, and the coal thrown about in all directions.  The line was impassable during the day, traffic being carried on by shifting the luggage and passengers across the wreck.  It appears the signal lights were burning at the end of the train when the approaching one ran into it;  hence we should say there was great carelessness on the part of those having charge of one, if not of both the trains.


The station was some distance from the town centre, which was lamented in this poem:
Oxford Chronicle, 3 Nov 1855
THAT Winslow's a railway and station 'tis true,
     Yet there's one thing makes travellers frown.
When for "Bussy" they cry, it is found all my eye,
     To take them to that quiet town.
Then through rain, wind, and dirt, though they'd fain give their shirt
     For a ride, as all well can tell,
They must trudge half a mile, with blue devils and bile,
     To their quarters, the old-fashioned "Bell."
A barrow and boy, are all they employ,
     Your luggage to take from the station,
While woman or man, do the best they can,
     At this place, - the last place in the nation.

The position of the station led to Winslow's expansion northwards. The railway enabled local farmers to send milk and butter to London on a daily basis. Some of the most enthusiastic users of the railway were members of the Whaddon Chase Hunt. There were many "hunting boxes" in and around Winslow, houses where wealthy people, usually from London, could make overnight stays and keep their horses.

Anthony Trollope, Can You Forgive Her? (1864/5), ch.17

The scene is a meet of the Roebury Hunt at the fictional village of Edgehill, Oxon.

"By George," said the literary gentleman, "just down from London by the 8.30 from Euston Square, and got over here from Winslow in a trap, with two fellows I never saw in my life before. We came tandem in a fly, and did the nineteen miles in an hour."


Oxford Chronicle, 13 Sep 1856: Telegraph service

ELECTRIC TELEGRAPH.- The British and Submarine Electric Telegraph Company are about to establish an office in this place for the transmission of messages to and from London and Liverpool and the various other towns in England and on the Continent.  The work is in progress, and it is expected will be in readiness for transacting business in the course of the present week.

The Electric Telegraph Company mainly built its lines along railways. It isn't clear how you sent a telegram from Winslow at this stage. The system was taken over by the General Post Office in 1870 and details then start to be included in local directories.


Oxford Journal, 23 Oct 1858

LONDON & NORTH-WESTERN RAILWAY
CRYSTAL PALACE,
ADMISSION, ONE SHILLING.
Grand Military Fete and Last Grand Display
THIS SEASON
Of the entire System of FOUNTAINS, CASCADES,
WATERFALLS, &c.
On MONDAY NEXT, October 25,
ON WHICH OCCASION
A       CHEAP       EXCURSION       TRAIN       will       leave
OXFORD     for     LONDON    at    7.25 a.m.;     BICESTER,
7.45 a.m.;    WINSLOW,   8.10 a.m..;      returning  from  the
Euston  Square  Station  the  same  day,  by  Special  Train,
at 7 p.m.
** Passengers desirous of proceeding to the CRYSTAL PALACE can alight at the Camden Town Station, whence the North London Trains start every 15 minutes for Fenchurch  street,   within   five   minutes’  walk  of   the London
Bridge Station, and Trains from London Bridge start every quarter of an hour.
**  There   will   be   NO   EXTRA   CHARGE  for  continuing
on to FENCHURCH STREET, but Passengers must join the Return Train at the Euston Square Station.

FARES FOR THE DOUBLE JOURNEY.

OXFORD First Class. Covered Carriages.  
BICESTER 6s. 6d.   4s.
WINSLOW    

Children under 12 years of age, Half-price.


Bicester Herald, 1 Nov 1872: theft from an office at the station

WINSLOW DIVISION PETTY SESSIONS,
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 23.
Magistrates present: E. S. Lowndes, Esq.,(in the chair), Captain Fremantle, and Fleetwood Lowndes, Esq.
  OFFICE ROBBERY AT WINSLOW.- Levi Hamp, a boy of Winslow, was brought up in custody on remand from the previous Friday, charged with stealing a bag, value 2d, and 1s 6d in money, the property of Mr. Thomas Henry Marks, coal merchant, Winslow, on October 18. - SAMUEL WHITE said he resided at Winslow, and was foreman to Mr. Marks.  On the 18th of October he left his office at the station about 5.30 all safe.  There was money in a desk in the cash box in the office, and in a bag.  About a quarter past six he returned to the office.  When he went in he found the cash box moved from its proper place, and placed close to a window. On examination he found a window unfastened and partly open, and a bag containing about 1s worth of coppers and a few 3d pieces gone.  He let things remain quiet till the morning and communicated with the police.  A window was broken when he returned to the office, which was whole when he left. – EDMUND BUCKINGHAM, foreman to Mr. Clarke at the station brickyard, Winslow, sent his little boy for some beer while he waited at the coal wharf gates on the evening of the 18th, and whilst there noticed somebody moving in Mr. Marks’s office, who he thought was the foreman.  Just after then some one ran past him.  His little boy met the person and said “Holloa, Mike,” and the person replied “Holloa, Jack.”  The witness would not swear that the prisoner was the person who passed him, but he was sure the one that passed him was the same as spoke to his boy.- JOHN BUCKINGHAM identified the prisoner as being the person who spoke to him on the evening of October 18, when he was returning with the beer to his father. – SERGT. CLARE [=Clear] apprehended the prisoner about three o’clock on the Saturday after the robbery and told him the charge.  After he had been in the lock-up about two hours Hamp knocked at the door.  On the witness going to him he said “Please will you let me see Mr. Marks, I want to beg his pardon, and ask him if he will forgive me, if I will pay for the window, and give him the money back.  I only had 10d.”  On the 21st he took him before Mr. Lowndes for the purpose of getting a remand.  He (witness) stated the charge.  The prisoner cried and said “I did do it.” – The prisoner now pleaded guilty, and was sentenced to three months’ imprisonment.- A time ago the prisoner was implicated with two others in breaking into a hen house, on which occasion he was admitted as Queen’s evidence, and the persons whom he gave evidence about were committed to gaol.

You can see a photo of Levi Hamp (aged 16) at Aylesbury Gaol in the Bucks Archives' Victorian Prisoners database.


Bucks Advertiser and Aylesbury News, 14 Dec 1872: Station Brickyard

WINSLOW STATION BRICKYARD.
THE WHOLE OF THE STOCK-IN-TRADE,
CONSISTING of 100 THOUSAND DRAIN PIPES, 100 THOUSAND BRICKS, a large quantity of Staffordshire Glazed Pipes, and other Materials; a capital BRICK and PIPE MACHINE, by Page; Pug Mill, 100 Dozen of Matting Bags for covering, and the necessary Machinery and Implements for carrying on a large business,
WILL BE SOLD BY AUCTION, BY Mr. James King,
On TUESDAY, the 17th of DECEMBER, 1872, AT 11 O’CLOCK,
By direction of Mr. W. E. Clarke, whose Lease expires at Christmas, 1872.
  The Yard is adjoining a good Road, and there is a branch line of Railway into it, affording great convenience for removal of the Stock.
  The Stock may be viewed at any time previous to the Sale.
  Catalogues are in preparation and may be obtained of Mr. W. E. Clarke, Fenny Stratford; Place of Sale; George’s Printing Office, Winslow; and at the Offices of the Auctioneer, Winslow.


Buckingham Advertiser, 3 Feb 1877
  ACCIDENT.- On Wednesday evening, January 24th, an accident, happily unattended by fatal consequences, happened to a man named William Colton, in the employ of the L.& N.W.R. company at Winslow, as a night porter.  He was proceeding in company with George Whichello, letter carrier, in the six foot way by the side of a passing goods train, when an engine and tender proceeding from Bletchley to Oxford at an express pace, came suddenly down upon them.  Whichello at once lay flat down on the ground and escaped without injury, but Colton was caught by the engine and thrown with great violence against the goods train on the other line, his head being severely cut and receiving several severe bruises, but we are glad to learn that he is progressing favourably.


Bucks Herald, 11 Sep 1880: Emmanuel Carter's fatal accident

FATAL ACCIDENT AT THE RAILWAY STATION.-
On August 28th last, an accident, which has unfortunately terminated fatally, happened to a porter named Emmanuel Carter, who for many years has been employed at Winslow Station.  While engaged in connection with the shunting of some coal trucks, Carter was struck by one of them while in motion, and knocked down.  Mr. Charles Clare, coal merchant, was standing close by, and at once snatched him off the rails, or he would otherwise have been run over.  He was taken home, and although much bruised, it was at first hoped that his injuries were not of a very serious character.  On medical aid being called in, however, it was found that his spine had received severe injury, and it was thought desirable to remove him to Oxford Infirmary, where, despite all that could be done for him, he expired on Friday, September 3rd.  Deceased’s remains were brought home to Winslow, and were interred in the Parish Churchyard on the following Tuesday, being followed by the Rev. F. J. Feltham, pastor of the Baptist Tabernacle, at which place of worship deceased had been a prominent member ever since its erection, and also by several of his fellow employes on the railway.

Buckingham Advertiser, 18 Sep 1880
  INQUEST.- On Saturday, September 4th, E. L. Hussey, Esq., held an inquest at the Radcliffe Infirmary, Oxford, on the body of Emmanuel Carter, aged 60, a porter in the service of the London and North Western Railway, at Winslow.- The son, Emmanuel George Carter, a single man at Winslow, said the deceased had been in the service of the Company 30 years.  On that day week he observed that he was in pain, and he had heard that he had met with an accident.  He had no power in his legs, but he could move his arms, and he was brought to the Infirmary.- Charles Clare, coal merchant, of Winslow, said he was on the coal Wharf on Saturday close to the Station.  The deceased was trying to couple two empty coal wagons together which had just been shunted on to the main line out of the coal siding, and before he had time to get out from between them he was knocked down, but the wheel of the wagon did not pass over him.  Witness pulled him out from across the metal.  He said “Oh dear,” and asked witness not to move his head, on which he could see two small wounds.  Witness thought he was struck by the handle of the break, and did not think that he succeeded in coupling the wagons, as he had not time.  The deceased went very quickly to the wagons, and witness thought he ought not to have gone in.-  George Viccars, porter at the station, said he was engaged shunting the wagons on to the main line.  Some of them were unhooked and he called the engine-driver back, and somebody, he did not know who, shouted “stop”.  The driver reversed his engine and stopped instantly, and on looking round he (witness) saw Clare pull the deceased our from between the tucks.  The deceased was used to the work of coupling.- John Angel, of Banbury, engine-driver, said he was shunting and the last witness called him back.  The deceased was seven wagons from the engine, but he did not see him until he saw Clare pulling him out.- Mr. E. S. Vachell, the House Surgeon, said the deceased was admitted on Wednesday and he died on Friday.  He had a fracture of the spine high up in the neck; he had some imperfect power in his arms, no more in his legs.  He said it was a pure accident and no one could help it.  He had a badly bruised and lacerated arm, one of the bones of the neck, and the spinal cord was torn, and death ensued from the injuries.- The jury returned a verdict of “Accidental death.”


Buckingham Express, 21 Jan 1882
  FATAL ACCIDENT.- On Saturday morning, January 14th, a youth named Thomas James Neal, son of Mr. J. Neal, shoemaker, was unfortunately run over by a train, at Winslow station, where he was engaged folding and distributing newspapers [on behalf of his employer E.J. French], among others he had a parcel to send to Padbury, by the 8.45 Banbury train, and the train being on the move, he ran to put the parcel into the guard van, and in so doing came into collision with a man standing on the platform and stumbled, falling on to a milk tin and rolling on to the metals, when the wheels of the last carriage passed over both of his legs, he was at once picked up, and carried into the ‘Railway Inn,’ [i.e. Station Inn] and medical assistance was procured, but it was thought best to convey him to Oxford Infirmary, which was done by the next train.  Very little hope was entertained of his recovery from the first, and he died on the following Tuesday, in the Infirmary.  Deceased was extremely quiet and respectful lad, and much sorrow is felt in Winslow for his untimely end.


Bicester Herald, 27 Aug 1886
  WINSLOW TO LIVERPOOL.- 28 persons patronised the L. and N. W. Ry. excursion trip to Liverpool, on August 23.  Arriving there at eleven in the morning, leaving at about 9.30 p.m., and reaching Winslow at about 3 a.m.


Buckingham Advertiser, 27 Sep 1890
WINSLOW.  THE RAILWAY STATION.- A welcome improvement is being made at the L.& N.W.R. Station.  There are at present only waiting rooms on the down platform, and as passengers from the Oxford line on to the Banbury line, or vice versa, as well as passengers to Bletchley, have often to wait on the up platform for some considerable time, waiting rooms there are much needed., and Mr. Brooks, the station master, has been trying for something like two years to get them.  A ladies’ room and general waiting room are now being erected right and left of the platform, with doors and windows opening straight on to it, and will soon be completed.

Buckingham Advertiser, 17 Jan 1891
  Further alterations are being made at the Winslow passenger station, one of the chief of which is the transfer of the booking office to the opposite ticket office, and vice versa.  By this new arrangement, the booking office will be greatly improved, both for light and accommodation, whilst the ticket office will be amply sufficient.


Buckingham Express, 20 June 1891
  A FEW evenings back (writes our local correspondent) a spectacle occurred at Winslow Railway Station which, for the moment, filled every spectator with horror.  A very large milk traffic is carried on from this station.  Just as the 8.30 train to Banbury was coming in, a man named Walker, in the employ of Mr. Edwards, of The Creamery, was pushing a trolley loaded with milk across the line, when he was caught by the buffer of the engine, thrown between the metals, and the engine and about half the train passed over him.  The driver, seeing what had happened, pulled up as quickly as possible and jumped off his engine, expecting to find the man a mangled corpse; but strange to say, Walker emerged comparatively unhurt, having been knocked down in a hollow place between the sleepers.  It is stated that had the affair happened on any other evening he would certainly have lost his life, as the engine which usually runs the train, having been temporarily disabled, was replaced on this evening by one with a fire-box higher from the ground.


Buckingham Advertiser, 1 Oct 1892
The New Railway to the North.
This refers to what became the Grand Central Railway, now forming part of the route for HS2.
  A town meeting was held at Winslow on Wednesday evening last, in the Infant School, in order to promote a petition to the Manchester, Sheffield, and Lincolnshire Railway Company that their new line to Leicester, Nottingham and the North, instead of branching off at Quainton Road, and thence by Hillesden and Finmere to Brackley, might keep to the present route of the Metropolitan Railway past Grandborough Road, Winslow Road, and Verney Junction to Buckingham and Brackley.  There was a good representative attendance, including - Mr. Geo. R. Greaves (who occupied the chair), Mr. T. P. Willis, Mr. F. Brazier (Grandborough), Mr. W. H. Hinton (East Claydon), Rev. P. H. Eliot, Mr. T. F. Vaisey, Messrs. Varney, Pass, Illing, Dunkley, Clear, G. King, F. Dancer, Whichello, East, Corkett, Elley, Saunders, Ash, Stonell, Fregard, Hawley, Neal, Warne, G. T. King, Lorkin, Russell, Clare, Burdon, Kennings, &c.
  The chairman, in opening the meeting [outlined their proposal] … Another line would be certain to lower the rates that existed, and if not much better for passengers it would certainly be so for goods traffic, so that it would be worth their while to try and get the Companies to alter their present scheme, and this would save cutting up the ground afresh by railways in their locality, which would be something to hunting-men like himself.  He then referred to the meeting at Buckingham for the same object, and said that Buckingham people were anxious for them to join in the matter …
  Mr. H. Brazier commented upon the enormous rates now being paid.  He said a load of cows to London cost 5/- a head, and a packed carcase cost 26/- or 27/-.  Carcasses came all the way from America quite as cheap or even cheaper …
  The Chairman then proposed that Winslow should co-operate with Buckingham in the matter.
  This was carried unanimously, and the following gentlemen were chosen as a Committee to carry it out.- Mr. H. R. Lambton, Mr. G. R. Greaves, Mr. H. J. Chinnery, Mr. T. P. Willis, Mr. Geo. D. E. Wigley, Mr. H. Brazier, Mr. H. Fregard, Mr. W. S. Neal, Mr. J. Hawley, Mr. J. East, Mr. A. Monk, Mr. W. H. Hinton.
  The meeting concluded with a vote of thanks to the Chairman - Proposed by Mr. Fregard, and seconded by Mr. Brazier.


Buckingham Advertiser, 28 Jan 1893
The Railway Rates and Charges. MEETING AT WINSLOW.
  A large meeting of Winslow townsmen was held on Friday evening, at the Bell Room to protest against the imposition of increased rates for the carriage of goods by the London and North-Western Railway Company.  Mr. T. P. Willis presided, supported by Mr. J. C. Hawley, Mr. W. S. Neal, Mr. E. A. Illing, Mr. H. Bullock, Mr. H. Freegard, Mr. E. Parrett, and Mr. A. G. Stevens, and among others present were- Messrs. Wise, J. Walker, R. Walker, Langley, E. Egleton, Fulks, &c., &c.
  The Chairman in an earnest speech, impressed upon those present the gravity of the situation, not only in Winslow, but all through the country, for the Companies, at a time like this, to increase their rates beyond all reason and all bounds, how it was that Sir Courtney Boyle and the other gentlemen could not see it was a minimum rate, and not a maximum that was required, he could not make out.  As Englishmen he urged them to start up and protest against it, and if that failed, to combine and get their goods by some other way- by the Metropolitan line, or by travelling from Aylesbury.
  [Mr. W.S. Neal (wine merchant etc.), Mr. E. A. Illing (grocer), who cited Mr. Hurlstone (ironmonger), Mr. A. G. Stevens (draper), Mr. Wise (stone mason), and Mr. J. Walker (fruiterer, etc.), all described personal experiences, with examples, of how the effect the increase of carriage rates had affected them.]…
  The following resolution, drafted by the Chairman, was proposed by Mr. J. C. Hawley, and seconded by Mr. Warne:-
“That this meeting most strongly protests against the imposition of increased rates of railway carriage by this Company, as being entirely opposed to what was generally understood to be the intention of recent legislation, and the enquiry held in consequence by the Board of Trade, and that, in the opinion of this meeting, such increase is calculated to intensify the existing depression in trade throughout the country.  This meeting is also of opinion that Winslow should be treated as the 50 mile rate, being within that radius at Winslow Road Station on the Metropolitan Railway.”
  This resolution was thoroughly discussed, a most earnest spirit prevailing the meeting; it was felt very keenly that Winslow being, by the London and North-Western Railway reckoning, four miles over the 50 miles from London, was charged on the 100 mile scale, while adjoining towns like Fenny Stratford, Leighton and Aylesbury were just within the 50 miles, and had the advantage of water carriage, this, as well as the fact that Winslow Road Station (Metropolitan ) was within the 50 miles, was most earnestly insisted upon by several of the speakers, it being apparent that if the Metropolitan  company would only make the necessary arrangements at Winslow, some enterprising individuals would soon see about the requisite conveyances to and from that station, which is only 11/2 miles distant.  Indeed one speaker went so far as to talk about fetching goods from Aylesbury, 10 miles distant.  Whilst the Chairman threw out a very significant suggestion that the company might find their assessment increased from £350 to £550 per mile if they persisted in the line they had taken up…
  The meeting did not stop here either, for while recognising the fact that the officials of the L.& N.W. Company at Winslow station did their best, it was pointed out that the siding accommodation was so badly arranged that often hours were spent waiting for non-delivered articles, such as feeding stuffs and other heavy goods, because they were tucked away in some sidings, and could not be got at till the passenger trains were out of the way; and a speaker said that while the traffic must be three times what it used to be, the Company were new, and had been for some years, employing less hands to deal with it; and as the Chairman noted, not only was there the waste of time with men while waiting for goods, but also those who had valuable shire horses- as many of the agriculturalists in the neighbourhood had- did not care for them to be standing amongst the puffing and blowing off of the engines any longer than could be helped.
  A resolution, proposed by Mr. Hillyer, and seconded by Mr. W. S. Neal, was then discussed, and adopted as follows:-
“This meeting is also of the opinion that better accommodation should be given to the consignees of goods, especially the non-carted traffic at Winslow station, than at the present time, so that consignees should not be kept waiting when they send for their goods as at present.”
  A vote of thanks to the Chairman concluded the meeting.


Plan of Winslow Station and sidings 1907
Winslow Station and sidings, 1907. The defunct siding at the top served a brickyard. Note the Horse Loading bay. From Dr R. Preston Hendry & R. Powell Hendry, An Historical Survey of LMS Stations (1982).


The origin of the Iron Bridge (removed in 2020) which replaced a previous wooden bridge

Bucks Herald, 5 Oct 1895
  The very pretty curved “Chinese” bridge over the Railway between Winslow and Addington has been pulled down, and is being replaced by a plain straight iron one.  The old bridge looked as if it might stand another fifty years, but then appearances are deceitful.


Bucks Herald, Saturday 1 Aug 1896

The Verney Arms at Verney Junction Opens

Business was commenced at the new hotel at Verney Junction on Monday. It is notorious that for many years the accommodation at this junction has been totally inadequate to the demands which has been placed on it by the increasing number of trains and traffic … It was generally felt that accommodation of other kinds, especially for horses and traps, was also urgently needed, and it is with a view to meet this demand that Messrs. Frank Higgens and Co. of Buckingham have erected the new hotel, which undoubtedly will prove of great convenience to the public.  It is situate about twenty-five yards from the new station gates, and is on the angle of the Winslow and Claydon road, south of the station. It faces the latter, and in front stands a fine ash tree surrounded with an oval of grass round which runs the carriage drive. It has two bays, is built of Hartwell red bricks with stone sills, and slated with chimneys of blue brick ornamental heads. … The work has been satisfactorily executed by Messrs. Matthew Bros. of Winslow, in accordance with plans and specifications prepared by Mr Philip Inns of Stowe, who has personally superintended the work.


Another trade which was made possible by the railway was in blackberries.

Buckingham Advertiser, 20 Dec 1884
  BLACKBERRYING.- It will surprise many of our readers to learn the quantity of this fruit from the hedge-rows in and around Winslow, sent from this station from September 18 to October 28, by Mr. B. Walker, and Mr. J. Walker.  The latter sent from Winslow station 7 tons 3 cwt., 2 qrs., and 8 lbs., and paid carriage to the amount of £6 16s 9d.  – Mr. B. Walker sent 3 tons 19 cwt. 3 qrs. and 20 lbs., and paid carriage amounting to £1 19 4d. The total weight sent by the two was 11 tons 3 cwt. 2 qrs., and the carriage £11 16s 1d.  A good price was paid to the gatherers who must have benefitted thereby.

Bucks Herald, 7 Oct 1900
An interesting scene may be witnessed at Winslow passenger station almost daily again this year, in the shape of the dispatch of heaps of small baskets containing blackberries. One day this week I counted 300 baskets containing 61 lbs, 50 baskets of 10 lbs, and 200 baskets of 12 lbs. No less than 2,000 baskets were sent away this week to all parts of England. They are gathered from the wild brambles in the hedgerows by the women of the villages and taken to Mr John Walker, fruiterer, Winslow, who gives about 1d per lb, depending on the ripeness of the fruit. It is somewhat singular that the Transvaal crisis [i.e. the Boer War] should affect a little trade like this, but I understand it is a fact. Mr Walker having annually sent some hundreds of baskets to Johannesburg, till this year. The greater part of the fruit is now despatched to the North via Bletchley.

The blackberry trade flourished for several decades until the First World War.

Aerial view of the station and sidings
The Station seen from the air, 1931
Source: www.britainfromabove.org.uk/image/epw036312


In 1947 there were 9 trains a day from Winslow to Bletchley, and you could get to Euston in 90 minutes if you travelled at the right time:

Railway timetable 1947

Winslow signal box
Winslow signal box, photographed in 1959

Railway poster advertising cheap day tickets
Oxford to Winslow return for 5s 6d (1956), from British Railways

In 1958, cheap Saturday trips to Bedford were on offer
Similar deals were available in 1965
Some of the tickets issued on the last day of passenger services
Railway poster
Railway poster
Tickets to Bletchley, Claydon and Swanbourne

The last passenger train ran on 30 Dec 1967: it was the 23:45 to Bletchley. You can hear some extracts from a recording made that day.

The first part of the recording is the last minutes of the signal box: signals are pulled off for a fast train to Oxford, then a train for Bletchley comes through, bells clang and the needles are switched off. The second part is the last train, the 23:45 for Bletchley, stopping at the station, with some detonators going off behind it.

The line was used for goods trains and occasional passenger specials until the early 1990s.

Milton Keynes shopper train
A Milton Keynes Shopper train stops at Winslow, c.1987

Amey Roadstone train c.1988
An Amey Roadstone train on the now single-track line passes under the Iron Bridge between Furze Lane and Buckingham Road, c.1988

See also:


Winslow Road Station

Winslow's second station, Winslow Road, between Winslow and East Claydon, was opened in 1868 on the Aylesbury & Buckingham Railway (part of the Metropolitan Railway from 1891). The proposed line was first discussed in 1853:

1853, Bucks Chronicle, 26 Nov
THE PROJECTED RAILWAY
Our readers are aware that a direct line, on the narrow gauge, from Oxford to London, through Wycombe, with a branch by Risborough to Aylesbury, and powers for one to Amersham, will be promoted this Session by the London and North Western, the Oxford, Worcester, and Wolverhampton Companies, and most of the influential Landowners, who last year formed part of the Board of the Mid-Western scheme.  The cordial alliance with the North Western Company, has thus secured to this line the use of the Euston-square terminus, with its enormous contingent advantages.  Though not included in the scheme of this session, it is evident that the line must eventually be extended from Aylesbury to Winslow.
1868, Oxford Chronicle, 3 Oct
NEW ROUTE TO AYLESBURY.- The new line of railway branching off from Winslow and running through the Vale of Aylesbury, was opened for traffic on Thursday last.  The line is about 8 miles in length.  Three trains in connection with the Buckinghamshire railway, run each way daily.

A horse-drawn vehicle called the Fly Coach provided a connection from The Bell. There was a through service to London (Baker Street) from 1892. The line was a commercial failure and closed to passengers in 1936. Winslow Road Station had a footbridge, unlike Winslow Station where you had to walk across the tracks at a "barrow crossing". The first photo (looking north) shows the station before it was upgraded in the 1890s, and the second (looking south) is later.

Winslow Road Station and level crossing

Winslow Road station

1895: Bucks Herald, 5 Oct
  Travellers by the Metropolitan Railway to Verney Junction will soon see a great change.  At Winslow Road a commodious station, which will be quite equal to that on the L. and N. Western at Winslow, is in course of erection.  At the junction itself I cannot hear of anything being as yet done to the Station, but the old Condensed Milk Factory is coming down, and is, I hear, to be replaced by a block of cottages.  If this is correct, Verney Junction, with its hotel as well, will be quite a different spot.

For more information and photos, see the Disused Stations website.

Some of the information on this page comes from C.G. Maggs, The Branch Lines of Buckinghamshire (Chalford: Amberley, 2010).

 

Copyright 21 October, 2021