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Call Attention before TES ?

British signalling of the past (UK, excepting Northern Ireland)

Call Attention before TES ?

Unread postby Mike Hodgson » Thu Feb 2, 2017 11:11 pm

I was told this evening by a retired signalman who worked Melton Constable that it was practice to send Call Attention before sending Train Entering Section on double track lines (although not on single lines). This is indeed as required by the M&GNJR double track AB regulations (March 1936 edition, reprinted May 1957) :

"Except in the case of the Section Clear or Junction Blocked signal and the Obstruction Danger sIgnal,and as otherwise provided for in Regulations 12 Clause (f), the Call Attention signal must always be given before any other signal and be acknowledged immediately on receipt."

Was this required anywhere else?
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Re: Call Attention before TES ?

Unread postby Pete2320 » Thu Feb 2, 2017 11:27 pm

Pretty certain that this was that normal method of working on the LMS.
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Re: Call Attention before TES ?

Unread postby Roger Bell » Fri Feb 3, 2017 9:51 am

How late did this practice survive on LMS lines into BR days?
On the former M&GN it lasted right up until closure of the boxes including Sutton Bridge Dock to Sutton Bridge Junction in freight only days in the 60's. I saw it used at Grimston Road in late 1959.

Apparently the Hull & Barnsley used CA before TES.
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Re: Call Attention before TES ?

Unread postby Mike Hodgson » Fri Feb 3, 2017 10:01 am

You're right Pete, very similar wording in the LMS 1947 regs, and they didn't make an exception for Obstruction Danger either, although their 3-3-3-3 emergency call to telephone didn't require Call Attention. 2 beats not preceded by Call Attention had a different meaning - a Call to the block telephone.
Their book says all signals must be acknowledged by repetition except TES which should be acknowledged by placing the block to ToL, 2-1 which should be acknowledged by 1 beat and those requiring a Reg 5 acceptance.

This conjures up a vision an awful lot of Call Attentions for one of those processions of banking engines returning on the Lickey, unless of course there were local instructions to the contrary.
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Re: Call Attention before TES ?

Unread postby mossend4 » Fri Feb 3, 2017 10:22 am

I recall there was a change in the ScR in the late 1950s - Call Attention had been required before TES up till then. Introduced at same time as TOS acknowledged by repetition, previously 1 beat. The 1960 Train Signalling Regulation Book confirms that Call Attention was not required before TES, so backs-up my memory that it was still done in the late 1950s.
Last edited by mossend4 on Fri Feb 3, 2017 10:25 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Call Attention before TES ?

Unread postby Mike Hodgson » Fri Feb 3, 2017 10:24 am

Roger Bell wrote:Apparently the Hull & Barnsley used CA before TES.


I have copies of their ETS and their Sykes Lock and Block regs of 1914, but not for ordinary AB.


Both books say send CA before all signals, no exceptions listed - not even Reg 5 or for a Train Running Away response to an Obstruction Danger signal.
This is one of the problems with the wording of the books - how literally do you take them? For example, they require the time all "signals" are sent/received to be recorded in the register, but of course the "Call Attention signal" is never booked - nor is it preceded by Call attention!
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Re: Call Attention before TES ?

Unread postby Mike Hodgson » Fri Feb 3, 2017 10:39 am

mossend4 wrote:I recall there was a change in the ScR in the late 1950s - Call Attention had been required before TES up till then. Introduced at same time as TOS acknowledged by repetition, previously 1 beat. The 1960 Train Signalling Regulation Book confirms that Call Attention was not required before TES, so backs-up my memory that it was still done in the late 1950s.


Former LMS lines only I think - at least the LNER's Eastern, North Eastern & Southern Scottish operating areas books all also confirm CA not required before TES. They also excepted Engine Assisting in rear. The LNER seem to have had more difficulty at Grouping than the others of the Big 4 in standardising their regulations though.
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Re: Call Attention before TES ?

Unread postby John Hinson » Fri Feb 3, 2017 10:44 am

The Call Attention before Train Entering Section survived on the LMS until the BR standardised regulations were implemented in 1960. The M&GN neither used LMS or LNER Regulations but their own arrangements survived until . . . . the line shut in 1959.

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Re: Call Attention before TES ?

Unread postby mossend4 » Fri Feb 3, 2017 1:07 pm

Mike Hodgson wrote:
mossend4 wrote:I recall there was a change in the ScR in the late 1950s - Call Attention had been required before TES up till then. Introduced at same time as TOS acknowledged by repetition, previously 1 beat. The 1960 Train Signalling Regulation Book confirms that Call Attention was not required before TES, so backs-up my memory that it was still done in the late 1950s.


Former LMS lines only I think - at least the LNER's Eastern, North Eastern & Southern Scottish operating areas books all also confirm CA not required before TES. They also excepted Engine Assisting in rear. The LNER seem to have had more difficulty at Grouping than the others of the Big 4 in standardising their regulations though.


Quite possibly. The boxes where I'd seen it applied were all ex-Caledonian and LMS. The nearest I got to an ex NB/LNE box was Whifflet East, but didn't see it being worked. Whifflet East worked to Whifflet South (ex CR/LMS) in those days, but under No Block Regulations.

I can't recollect what Book preceded the 'Green Book' in these ex-LMS boxes. I have a vague recollection of a Book with red or wine-colour jacket. Was that it, and what was it called?
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Re: Call Attention before TES ?

Unread postby Mike Hodgson » Fri Feb 3, 2017 1:24 pm

mossend4 wrote:
I can't recollect what Book preceded the 'Green Book' in these ex-LMS boxes. I have a vague recollection of a Book with red or wine-colour jacket. Was that it, and what was it called?


All the Big 4 carried on using their existing books until the green one came out in 1960, so the red book you saw would be the LMS 1947 "Regulations for Train Signalling on Double Lines of Railway by the Absolute Block System; by the Permissive Block System; also General Instructions to Signalmen" to give it its full title. There were various amendments to these issued by BR, and there were a few other books dated in the 1930s for the various methods of working single track lines. For example in 1950 ballast trains stopping in section were changed from 1-2-2 to 2-2-3 (which had previously been a freight with a fitted head of 4 vehicles).
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Re: Call Attention before TES ?

Unread postby steve thompson » Fri Feb 3, 2017 8:53 pm

The call attention before TES may have gone back to Midland days, where some boxes with goods lines, only had one set of bells. They called attention for all signals one the main lines but never on the goods lines.
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Re: Call Attention before TES ?

Unread postby MRFS » Sat Feb 4, 2017 2:00 pm

FWIW, the 1929 LMS General Signalling Regs for Telegraph Bells has the clause that Call Attention is only to be used where especially authorised.
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Re: Call Attention before TES ?

Unread postby vic south » Sat Feb 4, 2017 10:21 pm

I remember a retired Toton reliefman who worked on the Erewash Valley route telling me about this. He claimed to have continued the practice pretty much to the end of his career. He retired just before Trent PSB took over. The amount of telegraph bell working may have been a factor in this! I can't imagine he was the only one still doing it!

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Re: Call Attention before TES ?

Unread postby Mike Hodgson » Sat Feb 4, 2017 10:58 pm

vic south wrote:I remember a retired Toton reliefman who worked on the Erewash Valley route telling me about this. He claimed to have continued the practice pretty much to the end of his career. He retired just before Trent PSB took over. The amount of telegraph bell working may have been a factor in this! I can't imagine he was the only one still doing it!

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They would have had to do this anywhere with four tracks - with only one bell circuit between two boxes, you had to have some means of knowing whether it was the Train on the Goods or the Main that was entering section, and for the sake of consistency and you would want to use the same procedure even if in places that only had a pair of two goods lines if they were worked under the Telegraph Bells regs.

This topic was discussed previously :
viewtopic.php?f=2&t=7294&p=73314&hilit=telegraph+bells#p73314
and the reason that this method of working had to finish :
viewtopic.php?f=2&t=7266&p=73159&hilit=telegraph+bells#p73159
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Re: Call Attention before TES ?

Unread postby John Hinson » Sun Feb 5, 2017 3:31 am

Not quite "anywhere with four tracks" - only those sections where there was no separate bell. By the 1950s, at least, the majority did. And most were replaced by LNWR permissive instruments in the early 1960s following an accident at Sharnbrook involving Telegraph Bell working. The only "Telegraph Bell" working that survived into later years was on lines classed as sidings worked on the "No Block" system.

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