Brian Hayes Remembered

We were saddened to learn of the death of Brian Hayes, one of our Trustees, on 15th December.

Brian Hayes: 1933 – 2017 obituary

Brian Hayes was certainly by inclination an LNWR man, being in fact chairman of our sister organisation the L&NWR Society.

Brian was a faithful and knowledgeable member of our own Trust becoming a Trustee in January last year and being a regular attender at our meetings and internet ‘chats’, despite the inconvenience of living in Oswestry. He was always ready to assist and was able to ask the most appropriate question based on his life on the railway, he had a most inquisitive mind!

Brian worked for the LMS having begun as a booking and enquiry clerk at Birmingham New Street Station. His qualities led his being selected as a Traffic Apprentice, the scheme whereby the company showed young men the ins and outs of the entire system and expected them to learn the jobs. He was first allocated to London Road Manchester (later Piccadilly), to learn his trade. He then moved through various jobs involved with operating the railway. When the British Railways Board set up an enhanced Freight Rolling Stock team to take advantage of TOPS Brian was appointed as one of the Inspectors. This was a seminal time for British Railways as it wrestled to come to terms with the vast expenses of the wagon fleet and traditional methods of operation. Brian eventually left BR in the mid-1970s having been appointed to a job in which he and his superiors did not see eye-to-eye!

Brian left BR for the Church of England and became an ordained priest. He was appointed to a parish close to Bury St Edmunds and subsequently served for many years at parishes in the Diocese of Lichfield. Retiring about the age of seventy, he moved to Shropshire where he lived in a village close to Oswestry, anf then Oswestry itself. He had not been well for the last few months but continued to be closely involved in the Trust. He finally fell ill while travelling to a Trustee meeting and was taken to Milton Keynes Hospital where he died on 15 December at the age of 84.

Both societies owe Brian a great deal.

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