STATION AND SHED STAFF.
1937 - 1943
PHOTOGRAPHS ON THIS PAGE WERE KINDLY SUPPLIED BY SELWYN AND
OF LLANDUDNO JUNCTION AND THEIR MOTHER DILYS PRICE (nee HUGHES)
DILYS WAS EMPLOYED AT THE STATION TELEGRAPH OFFICE , DURING THIS PERIOD, AND
APPEARS ON SOME OF THE IMAGES BELOW.
attempt to copy or reproduce any of the images should be
made, without the permission of
Selwyn Price, Trefor Price or Dilys Price,
who can be contacted through the email link on the HOMEPAGE.
Llandudno Junction Station staff 1937.
Llandudno Junction Station staff 1938
Llandudno Junction Station staff 1938
Llandudno Junction Telegraph
Office staff 1942-1943
Left to Right - Dilys Price (Selwyn and Trefor's Mother)
Olwen Edwards and Eleanor Jones.
The Liverpool and Manchester
engine "LION" at 6G with Selwyn and Trefor's Grandfather on
the footplate wearing a flat cap.
"LION" was here for the historic run described on the "STEAM DAYS" page on this website.
"LION" again with Dilys on the footplate.
Dilys on the footplate again.
Mr. Jones (Stationmaster),Dilys, Olwen, Eleanor and Lewis Davies in 1943.
Mr. McKinsey (left) and Horace
Price (Selwyn and Trefor's Father) working on the turntable at
6G during the 1950's.
Horace worked all week plus a Saturday morning for a take home pay of £10.00 per week.
He left the railway to work at BDA Hotpoint, as a welder, for a take home pay of £14.00 to £16.00 per week.
Here is another photo of the
Telegraph staff taken on the same day as those above.
It shows (L-R) Llandudno Junction Station Master, Olwen Edwards, Dilys Price and Eleanor Jones.
Possibly 6G footplate crew behind.
Below is a notice to all staff regarding leaving the railway to join the armed services in 1939.
This was Dilys' copy of the LMS letter, to all staff, as can be seen by the note in top right hand corner 'Tele G Miss D. Hughes' whiich was Dilys' single name.
Price has related the following stories of his mother
Dilys Price, who is mentioned above, and is shown in
several photographs on this
page with her work colleagues from the Telegraph office at Llandudno Junction.
Dilys' father was a foreman in the engine sheds at the Junction and managed to get her an interview for the job when she left school in 1936, aged 16.
(There are photos of her father on the
6G web site.)
mother told me that her interview was on the Friday and
she was to start work on the
following Monday where she would join the Telegraph Office on the station.
She was given a copy of the Morse Code on the Friday and had to learn it over the weekend, ready to start work on the Monday morning.
The most well known letters in Morse Code are "SOS";- Dot, Dot Dot, Dash, Dash, Dash, Dot, Dot, Dot. Though my mother always called it "Dee, Dee, Dee, Dah, Dah, Dah, Dee, Dee, Dee.
I think the
Railway Morse Code boxes were different to what we see in
the movies from World War Two.
I have never seen or heard the railway telegraph system, but my mother was adamant it was "Dees and Dahs".
Anyway, armed with the the rudimentary knowledge of Morse Code she was then introduced to her task, to transmit lists of goods, numbers and product codes
travelling along the North Wales coast.
sometimes included telegram messages between people too.
Her recipients were other Telegraph Offices in Bangor,
Holyhead, Chester and Crewe who all shared the
same telegraph wire. It all sounds very chaotic now, but it seemed to work way back then.
The Telegraphists waited their turn to use the system, while say Holyhead were "chatting" to Crewe. Then, when their conversation stopped, you transmitted your message to your destination station.
Nowadays we have dedicated private lines between each station, but back then all stations on that track used the same telegraph wire.
My mother said that if you were in a hurry to send an important message, you had to interrupt the other people using the system at remote stations by grasping your
telegraph handle and "rattling it quickly". This caused the current users to wait and listen to who interrupted them and allow the priority message to be sent.
priority message had been sent, you should allow the
interrupted parties to continue with their messages.
Obviously on very busy days, it must have been quite chaotic to determine who had the highest priority!!
My mother said her first messages were sent slowly, and thankfully the other telegraphists listening would be patient with the new user.
Once she became more familiar with the Morse Code and the special words used by the railway (every industry has its own "language") she was
able to interrupt more proficient users with her high priority messages as necessary.
It is hard to imagine unless you are a telegraphist, but every user has their own "signature". My mother could tell who was transmitting just by listening to the
speed or inflection of the message. Obviously this skill was learnt over time.
My mother also worked nights at the Junction telegraph office, they probably had a rotating shift system.
Nights were quieter than days and allowed her to have friendly "chats" with her colleagues at remote stations using Morse Code.
maintained friendship with several fellow telegraphists
long after she left the railway.
It must have been quite disturbing to walk into the telegraph office and hear somebody laughing out loud over some message they had received from their colleague.
This would have been even stranger when the whole station was in darkness due to the blackout restrictions during the war..!
I have lots more stories from my mother; the time she shook hands with Churchill, but he refused to sign her autograph book;
King and Queen close up when their train stopped at the
station; getting free railway passes to visit friends;
going to Dublin to buy her wedding ring and
returning with a box of fruit (bananas?) for her colleagues.
My mother left the railway in 1948 when she married my father.
They did not allow married women to work on the railway in those days, but the rules were changed the following year when her friend married and she stayed on the railway.
My mother had lots of happy stories to tell us children despite the dark days of WW2 and post war years.
North Wales was spared much of the pain and suffering that
many cities had endured
February 3rd 2010.
Trefor Price has sent in the
following photos that he has just unearthed at Dilys's home.
Some show Selwyn and Trefor's grandfather, William James Hughes who was the foreman of the engine cleaners at 6G.
William wore a bowler hat for work as is shown in some of the rare shots below.
This first shot shows William ,
in his bowler hat on the left of photo, in front of the iconic
LNWR 2-2-2 Number 3020 "Cornwall".
This engine is now part of the National collection.
Photo is undated but possibly 1940 or before as the 1P tank in the background (6744)
was scrapped by 1944. (detail by John Powell)
The photo below was provided by
John Powell showing "Cornwall" leaving Colwyn Bay with a
Director's special (undated). Photo: H. Gordon Tidey.
This shot was taken at 6G and
shows William on the right still in his bowler.
This is the famous shot of 6220
"Coronation" at the Junction for the filming of the "Royal
of June 1937 also shown on the "STEAM DAYS" page on this website.
William is on the left.
William in front of an unidentified engine at 6G.
Another unidentified engine and staff.
Station staff on the 14th July 1927.
The next three shots show unidentified groups of 6G workers.
A nice undated shot of an
unidentified engine and train leaving the Junction.
This shot shows a proud group of staff at Llandudno Junction station in 1938.
This photo is shown in the group of thumbnails above but shown again here as this is a much clearer shot.
The faces map below identifies
most of the staff above when used in conjunction with the list
below the map.
Railway Staff, Booking Office
Clerks, Station Master, Station Master Clerk and Telephone and
Dilys Price is shown in this 1937 view, second row, fifth from left.
(This photo is also shown above on this page but this is a much clearer scan)
Another shot of the cleaning staff at 6G with William still wearing his 'trademark' bowler at the left of engine.