Holman Fred Stephens

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Holman Fred Stephens
ColStephens 1.jpeg
The Colonel about 1923
Born 1868
Died 1931
Employer Festiniog and Welsh Highland Railways
Occupation Manager and engineer
Predecessor Eric H. R. Nicholls
Successor Evan R. Davies
Wikipedia entry Holman Fred Stephens
Official positions held:
FR Co. Chairman 01.1925 - 10.1931
FR Co. Exec 01.1925 - 10.1931 G.Manager
05.1925 - 10.1931 Loco Supt.
04.1923 - 10.1931 Engineer
FR Co. Director 1924 - 10.1931
FR People | WHR People

Lt. Colonel Holman Fred Stephens (31.10.1868-23.10.1931) of the Royal Engineers.

Holman Stephens was a well established engineer and manager of light Railways who had already been material in influencing the legislation that enabled the railway to maintain its independence after "The Grouping" of the main railways. He was recruited by Henry Joseph Jack to help establish the new combined undertaking of the Welsh Highland and Festiniog Railways and progressively took over the management of the lines as Jack's regime failed.

Although used to dealing with railways that were short of capital, the poor state that the FR had drifted into, combined with old established work practices and an under-resourced Welsh Highland, left him with an uphill task in dealing with the massive increase in road competition during the 1920s. Adept at cost control and building tourism traffic, he was however able to ensure that the railway survived a critical period.

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