Handshake at Rushton station

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Description:On a wet day at Rushton, station staff and footplate crew exchange a friendly handshake.

This could have been a retirement handshake, or a goodbye handshake due to closure of the station. Who knows?

A schoolboy looks on as steam shrouds the platform edge; a scene that will never be repeated again, except on preserved railways.

This image is featured by kind permission of the Churnet Valley Railway.

The boy on the platform

We recently recieved information about the image from the boy in the photograph. He wrote:

This picture was taken in the last few days of the passenger service on the Macclesfield to Leek section in November 1960. Given the amount of light, it cannot be the actual last train (on the Saturday evening).

I would say that it was a picture taken for that Thursday's edition of the Leek Post and Times - hence the posed hand-shake. It must therefore have been taken on the Monday or Tuesday to make the Post and Times edition time on the Wednesday.

I would also say that the train is the one that was heading from Macclesfield having arrived from Leek, just after 4pm, arriving in Rushton about 4.20 pm.

How do I know? Because I travelled on that train up to its demise and the schoolboy standing on the platform in the background is the 11 years old me.

John Lichfield, now living in Paris.

He also wrote,

the railwayman standing on the station platform shaking hands with the engine driver is Mr Gibson - Wilf Gibson I think - who was the last station master at Rushton.

Many thanks to John for this additional information.

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Link to this resource

Donor ref:unknown (109/16097)

Source: Churnet Valley Railway

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