Tom King

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Tom King played a significant role in the early years of the FRS. According to Dan Wilson's diagram "The Saving of the Festiniog Railway, 1950-54" he had relatives in the Portmadoc area and was present at the Bristol Meeting. He was one of the original FRS committee having been co-opted by his friend Fred Gilbert. [1]He was then on the Bath Committee and at the 2 Barnett meetings (7th October 1951 and then later to pick up the pieces) and the Kensington Meeting on 22nd April 1952 and party to the "Proposed Festiniog Railway Preservation Society" (FRPS). Allan Garraway explains that he worked at Finchley Urban District Council as Surveyor with Leslie Smith. On the GNR "Towns Line" centenary special train Tom introduced Leslie Smith, Trevor Bailey and Alan Pegler to the FRPS's plans. He was then present at the Kings Cross GNR Hotel meeting (Jan 1953) and the Finchley Town Baths meeting (early 1954) at which he* and Allan Garraway met Leslie Smith and Trevor Bailey and were told by them that if Pegler senior put up the money to take over the FR the Peglers must have control. He then reported this to the other FRPS committee members including Bill Winter, Vic Mitchell, Fred Gilbert, and Bill Broadbent (Chairman). They considered how else the FR might be taken over but could see no alternative to the Pegler offer.

  • It is hard to believe Allan Garraway was not also present at this Finchley Town Baths meeting since he recalls the weather conditions (Garraway Father & Son, page 112) but Dan Wilson's diagram does not confirm this. Talking of this meeting Garraway also says "Leslie Smith & Trevor Bailey told us."


  • Wilson D H (1979) Diagram published in Porthmadog to Blaenau, Middleton Press.
  • Garraway A G W (1985) Garraway Father & Son, Middleton Press, Midhurst, West Susssex, GU29 9AZ.
  1. ^ "Looking Back", Ffestiniog Railway Magazine, Issue 085, page(s): 026 - 025030