S & T department

From Festipedia, hosted by the FR Heritage Group

The S&T Department was established in 1956 under the voluntary direction of Norman Pearce. Point indicators were in 1965 the responsibility of the Permanent Way department and lever frames were the responsibility of the Mechanical Department. The S&T section was only responsible for colour light signals at Minffordd Quarry Lane (Lottie's) Crossing - there were none elsewhere - the telephones and electric train staffs.[1]

During the 1960s, and possibly just before, there was a 'Western Signal Gang' led by Bill Young & Tony Stapley, trained at Reading by BR WR S&T, some other signal & general engineers - and a connection with the Railway Enthusiast Club (REC) at Farnborough, Hampshire - that bought and collected signalling equipment from BR. They also did much pole route work. By 1968 they had largely ceased to operate. At this time Norman Pearce attracted some SR signal engineers, led by John Wagstaff and David Josey (also a REC member), to the FR. This Signal Gang was successful in obtaining from BR quantities of equipment that led to the first phase of re-signalling the FR in the period 1968 to 1973. Bob MacGregor, always known as Bob Mac, also of the REC & ex-WR S&T, was introduced to the FR at this time as a volunteer and subsequently joined the permanent staff.

In the spring of 1984 there was a change of functions and title to become the Signalling & Telecommunications Department with Bob MacGregor as S&T Engineer and Norman Pearce as S&T Engineer (Telecommunications). In 1989 there was a reshuffle in which Bob MacGregor became Workshops Manager with S&T joined to Electrical as a Section under the Workshops Manager with Alan Skellern as Section Supervisor. Most electrical functions (other than on-train and battery operated supplies etc.) were transferred to Buildings, Parks & Gardens in 1995. The department's carriage electrics functions were transferred to the carriage works.

In 2010 the department became the S & T Section of the Infrastructure Department, as part of a management restructure of the railways external engineering functions.

See also[edit]


  • FR Chronology
  1. ^ Cunningham, Roy (1965). The Volunteer's Manual. Harbour Station, Portmadoc, Caerns.: Festiniog Railway Society Limited. , page 20