Cambrian Railways Roll of Honour: A conservation project
The Roll of Honour is a record of Cambrian staff who served in the armed forces during the First World War.
A lasting tribute to these men, it is also an important historic record. However, it was produced on poor quality paper (perhaps due to wartime shortages) and had suffered environmental damage over the years.
Therefore, it was agreed to conserve the Roll of Honour and ensure its future preservation. During early 2014 specialist conservators undertook this challenging project.
Treatment included surface cleaning, and washing in static baths of alkaline water. The document was later repaired and lined with mulberry paper. It was then stretched across a rigid museum board.
The frame was also repaired and adapted for conservation-grade mounting. Even the interesting graffiti on the back of the frame was protected.
This is a fitting commemorative tribute to the Cambrian casualties and survivors of the First Word War.
Cambrian Heritage Railways is committed to the preservation of its Railway Heritage. It is also faithful to the memory of its long-serving workforce.
Project undertaken by Britton and Storey Fine Art Conservation www.brittonandstorey.co.uk
As a means of completing the Volunteering section of The Award, and supervised by Alan Braddock, the students have been identifying all those articles relating to Oswestry’s railway. A surprising number of well-illustrated pieces have come to light, which are being systematically collated by curator Lionel Wass who says, “This is all of great value and interest as the railway progresses with the refurbishment of Oswestry Station, the only one of Britain’s heritage railways to boast a former system headquarters. It also comes at a time when we are commemorating the 50 years since the last passenger train left Oswestry for Gobowen.”
Even more space in the Museum for new collections is being created by a plan to move a large collection of railway books from the Museum up to Oswestry Library where they are to be catalogued, kept under improved conditions and made much more accessible to the public.
Leafing Through History
Oliver Jones and Logan Bradley with a few of the Railway Magazines
They have become so keen on this weekly task that they extended their attachment from three to six months!
Most of the journals have been donated to the Cambrian Railway Museum and are now taking up too much space, as CHR reorganises its collections for the growing numbers of artifacts and visitors it is attracting.
Despite the pressure of exams, Oliver Jones and Logan Bradley, both participants in the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award at the Marches School, have been ploughing through hundreds of back issues of railway magazines that have accumulated over the years at Cambrian Heritage Railways (CHR).
CHR Railway Book Collection
A unique collection of Railway Books now housed at Oswestry Library, was formally opened on Wednesday 23rd November 2016.Over many years, the Cambrian Railways Museum in Oswestry Station has acquired mainly from the public and members a substantial collection amounting to > 1,700 donated railway books. However, the collection has never been comprehensively catalogued or made readily accessible to anyone.
CHR Books being sorted prior to cataloguing
Detailed discussions with Oswestry Library during 2016 resulted in a collaboration to move the collection to the Library on permanent loan and for reference only, thereby addressing the issues mentioned above using professional staff and expertise, and substantially enhancing the Library’s existing set of already popular railway books.
The greatest number of our books for which there is space at the Library is 1,200. Cambrian Heritage Railways (CHR) purchased suitable library shelving in order to progress the project and sufficient to display approximately half the collection at any given time. Both CHR and the Library are grateful to the Rotary Club of Oswestry for a grant towards the purchase of the shelves.
Although the Cambrian Railways Company headquarters and works were in Oswestry, the majority of the 300 mile network was in Wales. Consequently, it was decided that the core of the collection is to be based on Anglo Welsh topics followed by other Celtic railways. We believe that the Cambrian now having its own large specialist collection professionally housed and catalogued makes this a unique asset in the world of railway preservation.
Online searches will be possible both remotely and within the library itself using a system devised and shared by the National Railway Museum in York. It is expected that most residents of Oswestry will commend the idea of this historic collaboration which will enhance the reputation of both organisations and improve access for all in the town. It may well in time attract serious students of railway history to Oswestry and in combination with the Cambrian Museum itself, be a
The collection on launch day.
real draw for school children undertaking projects.
If members for CHR and the public have books for which they are seeking a home and which they feel might add to the core collection, they may wish to search online via the library after mid January (when the cataloguing should be complete) to see if we already have copies. If the book to be donated is in particularly good condition and or eg signed by the author, we will be interested to see it. For books to be donated please contact curator Lionel Wass at the Cambrian Museum in the Station Yard on Thursday afternoons or other times when the Museum is open or Roger Date in the Oswestry Station Building during special events and/or train running days. .Other railway books may also be accepted though it is likely that these would be put on sale in the Railway Shop specifically to raise money for the Museum budget, including the maintenance and enhancement of the book collection. Despite our rapid growth as an organisation, we cannot accept books on loan, nor have we the funds to buy books.
at Oswestry and Llynclys