Our First Days at Nine Elms /Other Depots as Fireman!

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Our First Days at Nine Elms /Other Depots as Fireman!

Post by 34017 Ilfracombe on Sat Jul 18, 2009 9:41 pm

Can you remember your first days walking into the lobby as a fully fledged fireman. I remember it well, as though it was yesterday!

The Drivers, Arther Camp, W.Turner. Frank Morris from the top link, came over and shook my hand; and welcomed me to Nine Elms. Then they told me, that they looked forward to working with me, and to always tell the truth, if I ever lied, that would be "end of". Younger Drivers, then came over and had a chat. As I remained Spare that day. Well the very first day, I had to prep an unconverted WC. I was, after checking the equipment, ready to do my fire. My Driver had other ideas, fill the sandboxes up. So I went round to get scoops of sand and put one scoop in each sandbox, and then went back to making up my fire. My Driver came back, and *ollo**ed me, and said, "Ive told you to fill up the sandboxes. And "I mean fill them up" Oh dear I thought what have I got myself into. Well, the loco got out slightly behind schedule, and back to the lobby I went. I sat down, looking glum, and peeved off. My Driver came in, and sat on his own. The other Drivers started talking, and invited me into a card school. Also they told me, not to worry about that C*** over the other side, he is a scab from 1955 strike.

So, I felt better; and the day improved playing beanie till the foreman Stan Hart sent me home early!

Happy Days, so what was your fuirst day like. But we certainly became men quicker, doing mens work, and we learnt not to take "Sh*** from anyone" Proud men we became? Cool
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Re: Our First Days at Nine Elms /Other Depots as Fireman!

Post by 35005CP on Sat Jul 18, 2009 9:51 pm

Things haven't changed from back then! I too have felt left out and peeved off on the first day as a Trainee Fireman, with some grumpy drivers! I don't know what the problem is with some footplate crews?! I guess you get that anywhere??

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Re: Our First Days at Nine Elms /Other Depots as Fireman!

Post by 34017 Ilfracombe on Sat Jul 18, 2009 9:57 pm

Admin wrote:Things haven't changed from back then! I too have felt left out and peeved off on the first day as a Trainee Fireman, with some grumpy drivers! I don't know what the problem is with some footplate crews?! I guess you get that anywhere??

I dont call it a problem, its a learning process. Many footplate men required the job to be done properly. And many told us, that they were easier on us, than what they had to contend with in the 30s.

I certainly look forward to 35013 Blue Funnel, and 34012 Launceston input, as well as On Loans?
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Re: Our First Days at Nine Elms /Other Depots as Fireman!

Post by 35005CP on Sun Jul 26, 2009 8:18 am

I remember cleaning down at the MHR and the KESR!

The KESR locos have alot of brasswork that needed cleaning and with Brasso in one hand, there were 2 people to a loco to be ready for the day.

At the MHR, there was normally only myself! I remember how difficult it was cleaning an unrebuilt such as 34007 to the likes of 34016 and 35005!

The Rebuilts are certainly easier as you can get on the running plate and start from the Cab end and then work you're way forward to the Smokebox....
I had to clean the whole loco; from the motion to the Boiler Barrel to the Smokebox to teh buffer beams and then I would concentrate on the Tender and even get up on top of the coal to clean the sides!!

Oh such fun!! But does make you feel proud in turning a loco out into its prime....

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