Staff and ticket
Staff and Ticket is a system of safeworking for single line section, with the prime aim of preventing two trains in opposite directions entering that section so as to cause a collision. Only one train is allowed into a section at a time, though this can be modified by the use of tickets. Staff and ticket working was used on the FR until 1912 and is currently used on the WHR.
The train staff is rod say 12 inches long, with the following characteristics:
- it is engraved with the names of the stations at either end of its single line section.
- it is coloured so that adjacent sections have different colours.
- It may have an Annett Key (or other key) attached at one end, for unlocking intermediate sidings within that section, or releasing starting signals, etc.
- Each colour may be associated with a particular shape, which would be made at the end opposite the key,
- It may have rings, so that only certain staffs may unlock Drawer-lock releases.
- If there are Tickets, there will be some nibs or a key on the staff for unlocking the boxes at each of the section where the unused tickets are stored. Each colour will have its own pattern of nibs.
When two or more trains have to follow each other in the same direction, there is a problem, because the Train Staff may end up at the wrong end of the section. To avoid this, tickets are issued to all but the last train to proceed in that direction. The relevant details are written on this ticket, which becomes the authority to enter the section. The driver or guard of the train has to sight the Train Staff before they accept the ticket.
Ideally, the tickets are printed on the same colour paper as the owning Train Staff, though sometimes this rule is relaxed so that white paper is used embellished with the name of the colour in words. On the WHR metal tickets are used.
Tickets are stored in a coloured box locked by the staff.
The colours may also be associated with a shape, such as Red-Round and Green-Heart.
Staff and Ticket on the F&WHR
Staff and ticket is currently used on the WHR. The staffs are all coloured differently to help distinguish them. The metal tokens are similarly coloured. Current WHR sections are as follows:
- Caernarfon – Dinas: Yellow Train Staff
- Dinas – Waunfawr: Blue Train Staff
- Waunfawr – Rhyd Ddu: Red Train Staff
- Rhyd Ddu – Beddgelert: Green Train Staff
- Beddgelert – Pont Croesor: Purple Train Staff
- Pont Croesor – Porthmadog: Orange Train Staff
- General Rule Book