11 FEBRUARY 2012 


Ade worked ‘on the Railways’ for 43 years (with a short break when he worked at 16MU – RAF Stafford). He worked as a Fireman between 1951 and 1958 on passenger and freight trains (freight engine class 2/class 3 tank engines) on the line between Stafford and Wellington, which went through Derrington. He then went on to work in the signal and telegraph department, covering the Stafford to Donnington area and Ade used to maintain the gate sets at Crossing Lane. His trains hauled such freight as beers from Burton upon Trent, sugar beet, coal and supplies to and from the Army base at Donnington, picking up and dropping off wagons en-route.

Branch lines played an important part during the war, as main lines were bombed the branch lines still enabled vital war supplies (munitions and armaments trains) to be moved around the country.

Churns of water were strapped to the framings of the engine; these were dropped off in isolated places where there was no water supply.

Distance markers can still be found along the Greenway, i.e. a ¾ mile post indicating the distance to Stafford Station, there is also a gradient post. There was a Plate Layers cabin on the track – gangs of 5 would cover 4 to 5 miles of track. A cattle arch was under the track enabling cattle to go through the Dell and into the adjoining fields.

The tracks were lifted during 1966/1967. Ade and his wife Joan would supply the workers with cups of tea.

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