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A day like any other? Christmas Days 1911-14

Network Rail’s recent promo video about the engineering works currently taking place this Christmas is a good reminder that there’s always something happening on our railway network – and that means staff at work. Where there’s work, sadly, there’s danger, even with a greatly reduced passenger service: as well all know, there’s plenty more to […]

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Disability History Month – a guest post on the NRM’s blog

Just a quick post today – to say that we’re thrilled that as part of our collaborative work between the University of Portsmouth and the National Railway Museum, we’ve contributed a guest post to the NRM’s blog, for Disability History Month. We’ve only scratched the surface of industrial disability and the railways, so there’s great […]

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Disability History Month – rehabilitating injured workers? The case of the one-legged engine driver

In our previous post we mentioned some of the immediate post-accident care that injured railway workers might have received – first aid at the scene and then hospital treatment. This time we want to say a little more about longer-term provision for disabled workers. Where and how disabled workers might receive treatment and after-care might […]

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Disability History Month – What happened to the workers after the accident?

So far our project has only focused on the accidents railway workers suffered: what happened after that, for them, their families and their communities has been largely left unspoken. That’s a product of the sources we’ve been using: the accident investigation reports cover the incident only and don’t go into the aftermath. But in other […]

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Jump! When can you abandon your loco?

What the ‘Railway Work, Life & Death’ database shows really nicely – and importantly – is how numerous the ‘mundane’ accidents were: the cases that injured or killed workers in their ones or twos, but which cumulatively produced a total number of casualties far in excess of the passengers who were affected by accidents. In […]

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Reading goods

Last week I attended an interesting workshop at the University of Reading, looking at the history of freight transport. It touched upon all modes of transport, though rail featured extensively – and occasionally safety issues cropped up, like the photograph of workers on top of a container, trying to secure a load that was in […]

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Explore your Archive week – a case from the archive: road safety on the railway

As well as this being ‘Explore your Archive’ week, it’s also Road Safety Week, run by the charity Brake. Road accidents remain a major source of casualties in the UK, and a part of this relates to occupational road risks. Although we might not expect it, road accidents are a source of concern for the […]

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