Presenter: Gordon Adams
For the last indoor meeting of the season, Gordon Adams took us on a trip to the coast for Part 2 of his talk on the railways of Southampton. Southampton is, of course, famous for its docks and shipping; so that is where we went.
The first railway to Southampton was built by the London and Southampton Railway company. Soon after, the company was investigating a second line to Portsmouth. Given the rivalry between the two towns, it was decided to be tactful and change the company to the London and South Western Railway.
A local company was set up to develop the docks, but a shortage of money, and a large loan from the LSWR, eventually resulted in the latter taking over the docks. Over many years of development the docks evolved into what we know today, much of it during the period of railway ownership.
Gordon with his wide collection of archive photographs, took us through this evolution, concentrating on the railway aspects. One little factor in this development was a short-lived train ferry which ran during WW1. Few images exist of this ferry, so further information will be gratefully received by Gordon. The railway content finished with a look at the bombing of the then new Southampton Central Station and the subsequent rebuilding in post war period.
Thanks are due to Gordon for his entertaining evening by the South Coast, giving the audience thoughts of the approaching summer.