When I commenced upon the task of endeavouring to set down this history from the facts I was able to glean, I took the opportunity of asking our current President Stan Jones, to write a foreword based upon his long and active association with the Society. 


I can only say that though the work seemed impossible at times, at the end of the day it has proven to be a most interesting and challenging task. 


Only recently, at a social function in Birmingham, I happened to mention my connection with this Society and my knowledge of its founders to one of the other guests. Imagine my surprise and pleasure when the person with whom I was in conversation turned out to be a former engine footplate-man contemporary with Harry Barr! I was immediately regaled with the subterfuge which went on during the moving of the 'City of Birmingham' locomotive into the Birmingham Science Museum.


It appears to have been something of a cloak and dagger affair, carried out in great secrecy and stealth by those who wished to get this locomotive into its present resting place. Walter Laight would have enjoyed meeting this old gentleman, of northern stock, who had originally worked from Aston sheds.


As soon as this document has received a fall screening from those with longer memories than mine, it will be completed by receiving the foreword. Then subject to demand, consideration will be given to a wider publication to members of the Society as part of marking the completion of the first 50 years of its existence


In conclusion, it is to be hoped that those of the current membership will find the document of some interest and, for future members of the society it is to be hoped that they will be enabled to gain an insight into the activities of those who have gone before them.                                                                


Frank Whitehead

August, 1998

Sutton Coldfield



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