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'Our Local Express'

The caption on this photograph reads:

‘Our Local Express’ The Brighton – Kemp Town ‘Motor’ at London Road Station.

Not too many of us can remember the the noise and the smell especially when standing on a bridge during entry and exit of a steam train.

Click on the photograph to open a large version in a new window.

Our Local Express
From the private collection of Gordon Muggeridge

Comments about this page

  • Gordon, can you tell me why the train would be on the ‘wrong’ side of a double track line? Alan

    By Alan Hobden (04/09/2012)
  • If its London Road station, then the train is on the wrong side of the track? Looking north towards the Ditchling Road tunnel and Lewes, the train should be on the other side of the track? I guess it could be shunting backwards, the short journey to Kemp Town!

    By Peter Groves (04/09/2012)
  • What a super pic. The diminutive loco is a Stroudley ‘Terrier’ and I believe the coach is one of those known as ‘Balloons’ because of their chubby profile. This is clearly a posed picture because the train is standing on the ‘wrong’ line. The milk churns are also rather suspect on an urban station like this one! My grandparents’ house was in Springfield Road and their back garden backed on to the cutting between the station and the tunnel under Ditchling Road.

    By Len Liechti (05/09/2012)
  • The above scene must have been altogether so familiar with my father who was born in the 1890s in Brighton, and who often spoke of the railways in Brighton and the surrounding area. His grandfather was the gatekeeper on the level crossing at Pevensey when he was young and he often stayed at the little cottage, which is still there. When I pass through Pevensey, I glimpse the cottage and think of my dad and his childhood. The photo is so nostalgic and a lovely look into the past. I remember the station and the line from Kemptown through to London Road and on into the countryside. The milk churns on the platform and the gaslamps take you back to another place in time, long ago, but thankfully through photography still not forgotten. And also the never forgotten smell of the steam trains, which I loved as a kid.

    By Mick Peirson (07/09/2012)
  • I am taking a mad guess as to why this train is on the wrong track – back in the days of steam they used to have small trains like this that were known as push and pull, the driver would work the contols from the end of the carriage leaving the fireman to carry on with his duties. I could be wrong in my observations, but I am sure that the railways buffs will put me right.

    By JOHN WIGNALL (08/09/2012)
  • Good shout, John. The article below confirms that Terriers and Balloons were used as “push-pull” or motor-train sets on the Kemp Town branch during the early years of the C20th. Visit .

    By Len Liechti (17/09/2012)
  • Strange we all commented on the train being on the wrong side of the track, but nothing unusual has been mentioned about the station buildings!!! I went to the footy last week, the Ipswich match. I walked over to London Road station, as its easier to board there, and then noticed that station building seen in the photo is not there now!! I wonder when/why that was removed?

    By Peter Groves (08/10/2012)
  • Just thought I’d add a link to some footage on YouTube. There’s some footage (in a 46 min film) of trains to and from Brighton, including the Brighton Belle arriving in Brighton and a few seconds (at around the 27 min mark) of a Terrier powered enthusiasts special arriving and departing from Kemp Town station. Enjoy. [Thank you for uploading this Geoff, its an absorbing programme. The Editing Team]

    By Geoff Robbins (10/11/2015)
  • The youtube footage has been “terminated”.  

    By Brian Hatley (10/05/2017)
  • I wonder if it is London Road Station, apart from on the wrong side of the track, the curve seems too tight and the tunnel seems too short, compared to that of Ditchling Road tunnel?

    By Peter Groves (25/02/2019)

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