Signalman in a signal box on the Lambton Railway, 1967.
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Signalman, Tyne and Wear, by Selwyn Pearce-Higgins. Lambton Railway was built in 1737. Wagons were pulled along rails by horses. During the early 19th century the railway expanded and linked to other railways. They were used to carry coal in this heavily mined area of Britain. In the 1950s coal mines were starting to close in the North East of England. The Lambton Railway finally closed in 1967, Lambton Colliery having closed 2 years earlier. Signal boxes were usually on two floors, with the operating room upstairs. This room had very large windows so that the signalman had a good view of the track and the trains that were approaching. Today, most signalling is carried out at a central location, responsible for a large area of track.