Welcome to the RCTS Surrey Branch web pages.
We meet in the evening every month from September to May with meetings starting at 19.15, finishing at around 21.30 with a varied programme of speakers from within the railway industry, heritage, technical and other railway related subjects. The venue is fully accessible and is located five minutes easy walk from Woking railway station, close to local bus routes and is adjacent to a large municipal carpark with some limited carparking on site. As soon as the venue is no longer required as a vaccination centre, we hope to reinstate our twice a season afternoon meetings. The branch also occasionally arranges virtual and hybrid meetings (part in person and part virtual) and we hope to reinstate hybrid meetings again in the very near future although it is not possible to do so for every meeting at the moment. A selection of Society publications and good condition second hand books for sale is available at meetings. Meetings are open to all members and non-members alike and we ask for a donation to offset the costs of running the meetings – this includes refreshments at the midway interval.
We arrange occasional visits to places of railway interest from depots, to heritage railways, to trips around parts of the railway network to name a few examples. The branch also has a stand at some of the local railway modelling exhibitions where we promote the RCTS, the branch and can share our enthusiasm for railways more widely.
If you would like to know more about the branch and/or would like to become more involved, please do not hesitate to ask – contact details are further down this page.
Our Photograph of a Class 701 is courtesy of Bob Ellison.
The lower photograph shows a group of Surrey Branch members at King's Cross during a tour of London to view new developments.
Books for Sale
RCTS Surrey and Windsor and Maidenhead branches have a large number of second-hand books available for sale at our meetings.
Click here for the list of books available as at November 2023 (.pdf file, requires Adobe Acrobat to view)
If you would like to purchase any of these books please contact the Surrey Branch Exhibitions Officer, Andy Davies to confirm availability.
E-mail : Andy Davies
We will then endeavour to have the relevant book available at our next meeting. Only a selection of our books are taken to meetings, so please contact us in advance with any specific requests.
Please note that we can not sell these books other than when collected at a Surrey or Windsor & Maidenhead Branch Meeting.
Also see the Archive and Library pages for additional books for sale.
Signalling High Speed Connections Across Europe by Chris McCandless-Stone, Fleet Performance Manager, Eurostar
Chris briefly introduced himself and his railway credentials. He began his railway career at age 16 and already has 21 years experience. He is not a signalling engineer himself but…Read More
National Railway Museum – Vision 2025 by Anthony Coulls, Senior Curator of Rail Transport & Technology, National Railway Museum
Oh, the tribulations and challenges of managing collections! The National Railway Museum (NRM) has not perhaps had the best of press recently. In the enthusiast world there have been mutterings…Read More
The presentation began with a ‘journey planner’ mapping out what Colin would cover in his talk, from the introduction and origins, through expansion and electrification, and suburban development, right up…Read More
A Life on the Railways by Tim Shoveller, Regional Managing Director, Northwest and Central Region of Network Rail
Tim Shoveller is still quite a young man but, in his working life as a railwayman, he has not only got to the top but packed in an incredible amount…Read More
Paul introduced himself and his involvement with the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway (DHR) currently as Vice-Chair of the DHR Society. He explained the reasons for having the hill stations during the…Read More
It is winter, and the Gilbert and Sullivan season. In ‘The Pirates of Penzance’ (a well-known Gilbert & Sullivan comic opera) a constable bewails the challenges of his professional life…Read More
A potentially exciting new Title, but as Fraser Pithie explained in an electrifying lecture, the launch of Great British Railways, having recently been put on hold, may not now happen. …Read More
An evening with Gordon Pettitt Part 2 Speaker: Gordon Pettitt Date: 21 April 2022 This was the second of a two part presentation originally scheduled for December 2020 but inevitably…Read More
Introduction to the Office of Rail and Road(ORR) Speaker: Tom Wake Date: 24 March 2022 You may be a little unsure of what the office of Rail and Road actually…Read More
The Art of Railway Timetabling (or How to Plan a Timetable) Speaker: Stephen Newman, Operational Planning Project Manager – Eastern Region Date: 17 February 2022 This was a virtual only…Read More
Introduction of Class 701 EMUs to South Western Railway Speaker: Neil Drury, Engineering Director SWR Date: 20 January 2022 The good news – they (701s) are coming, and are in…Read More
Presenter: Dave Coxon Everyone was welcomed, before a minute’s silence for HRH Prince Philip whilst photographs of the late Prince were shown. Dave introduced himself with a brief outline of…Read More
Presenter: Andrew McLean – Assistant Director and Chief Archivist, National Railway Museum RCTS Surrey Branch organised the evening as a joint meeting with the Southern Friends of the National Railway…Read More
Presenter: Cliff Perry, Railwayman All were welcomed especially our speaker Cliff Perry, who would be talking about railway safety and providing an update since his previous visit to the branch…Read More
Presenter: Andy Davies The business of the Branch AGM went smoothly with the agenda, minutes of the previous AGM, reports and accounts all having been circulated in advance. They were…Read More
Presenter: David Brown After being introduced, David went straight into his presentation. A number of railway companies were experimenting with electrification by the early 20th century and David explained how…Read More
Presenter: Gordon Rushton The presentation started with a question – why restore a 1930s train for 21st century mainline use as this is ‘insanely difficult’? It was said that it…Read More
Presenter: Chris Nettleton, honorary editor of the Gresley Magazine, membership secretary of The Gresley Society Chris briefly introduced himself before going straight into the presentation. Herbert Nigel Gresley was born…Read More
Presenter: Gordon Pettitt The meeting held on 17 December 2019 comprised the Branch AGM and ‘An evening with Gordon Pettitt’ separated by an interval for socialising and enjoying some excellent…Read More
Presenter: Andrew Haines – Chief Executive Officer, Network Rail Andrew Haines was appointed as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Board member of Network Rail (NR) in August 2018.Prior to this…Read More
Presenter: Alan Nichols, Train Driver retired Alan kindly stepped in at short notice when Andrew Haines advised that he would have to leave early because of his work commitments. He…Read More
Presenter: Mike Corbett, ex Project Manager, Flying Scotsman Mike’s recent involvement with Flying Scotsman (FS) began when First Class Partnerships (FCP) were contracted to manage the project in 2012 after…Read More
Presenter: David Wilby, Regional Development Manager, South Western Railway A relative newcomer to railways, David’s background is in planning, including transport planning in his previous job at Wokingham Borough Council.…Read More
Presenter: John Cartledge – former Head of Policy and Research at London TravelWatch Our booked speaker was unable to attend so John stepped in to tell us about his home…Read More
Presenter: Murray Brown – Deltic Preservation Society Murray began with a brief resumé of his background in railways mentioning that his father used to work for ICI and knew Dr…Read More
Local Railway Attractions
The Mid-Hants Railway (The Watercress Line)
Running from a main-line connection at Alton through rolling countryside to Alresford in Hampshire, the line portrays Southern practice in the 1960s era. See www.watercressline.co.uk for further information on services, special events and facilities.
The Great Cockcrow Railway
This is a 7¼ in gauge line located in Lyne, near Chertsey, Surrey. The railway offers an intensive service over two routes, each over two miles long. The site has some twenty steam locomotives and several petrol units. The site is open every Sunday afternoon between Easter and October and certain other afternoons. See www.cockcrow.co.uk for further information on services, special events and facilities.
The Frimley Lodge Miniature Railway
Frimley Lodge Miniature Railway is located in Frimley Lodge Park, Sturt Road, Frimley Green, Camberley, GU16 6HT. The Park has large open spaces, wooded areas and is adjacent to the Basingstoke Canal.
This is a 1km line with gauges of 7¼", 5" and 3½" with varied resident and visiting locomotives. Trains normally run on the first Sunday in each month from March to November. The are a number of additional sessions during school holidays and some Bank Holidayss
Further information available at www.flmr.org
Operates every Sunday afternoon from the start of May until the end of September and Thursday Afternoons in August at Barrs Lane, Knaphill, Woking. Further information available at mizensrailway.co.uk
Malden and District Society of Model Engineers Ltd
Operates the Thames Ditton Miniature Railway, Claygate Lane, Thames Ditton, which can be seen from the main line near Hampton Court Junction. The railway operates Easter Sunday and Monday, then the first Sunday of the month and every Bank Holiday Sunday and Monday until the first Sunday in October.
Further information is available at www.malden-dsme.org
Stoke Park Railway, Guildford
Operated by Guildford Model Engineering Society at their site in Stoke Park, Guildford with access from London Road, GU1 1TU. Regular public open events include miniature passenger hauling trains running on 3½" and 5" gauge raised track and also 7¼" gauge ground level track. Both feature live steam and diesel outline electric locomotives. 16mm and Gauge 1 Garden Railways featuring mainly live steam locomotives, and 4mm indoor layout. For further information see www.gmes.org.uk