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‘Slick Silent Switches’: fittings and flourishes from the Wolverton Works

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The Wolverton Works archive contains drawings of early locomotives, carriages and wagons, it also contains images of intricately designed fittings.

These fittings show off the glamour of travel in early 19th century railway carriages as well as the proud and painstaking work behind it.

This beautifully designed switch plate would allow the passenger to adjust their light and fan from their seat as well as being able to call for an attendant. See the note in the top right hand corner ‘slick silent switches fitted for s [sleeping] car 8406’

Drawing from the Wolverton Works archive

Reference number: 6/1396

Even the hooks from the back of sleeping car doors are carefully coloured and shaded.

Drawing from the Wolverton Works archive

Reference number: WOLV 6/89 

This  drawing, showing door handles between first class smoking carriages is functional but beautiful in its own way, like many other engineering drawings in the archive even the grain of the wood is shown.

Drawing from the Wolverton Works archive

Reference: WOLV 4/1107

You can come and see the Wolverton archive for yourself. The archive catalogue is listed on this page under ‘Wolverton Works’ and details of how to come and view material in Search Engine can be found here

Written by Alison Kay

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  1. John Blye

    Early 20th century, surely?

    1. Alison Kay, Assistant Archivist

      Apologies John – my mistake. Wolverton did manufacture early carriages and we have many drawings from the 19th century showing interiors, including those of royal trains and special saloons.

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