Chester, Cheshire, 1940s
A GWR Publicity view of the River Dee at Chester, Cheshire, in the late 1940s. People are sitting on the benches and strolling along The Groves beside the banks of the river. There are boats moored up on the water's edge, and a kiosk and the Queen's Park Bridge can be seen in the distance.
© STEAM Museum of the GWR
1940s, Boat, Bridge, Cheshire, Chester, Kiosk, Queens Park Bridge, River, River Dee, Summer, The Groves
Midget Submarine superstructure, 1943
Also built in the Carriage and Wagon Works at Swindon were 50 of these midget submarine superstructures which were produced for the Admiralty. The superstructure was made of mahogany and then covered in outer curtains that protected the driver and his assistant from the flow of water when submerged. All joints had to be precision made in order to prevent any water penetration into the submarine, and the vessel was built to withstand water pressure of 90lb to the square inch, so allowing it to submerge to a considerable depth. The work on the midget submarines was top secret. Only the men directly involved in its design and construction knew about it and they were sworn to secrecy. The screens surrounding the submarine in this image are testament to the sensitive nature of much of the war work carried out at Swindon Works.
Bailey Bridges, No.2 Shop, 1942
This Official image taken in April 1942 shows timber components for Bailey Bridges under manufacture in No.2 Shop, the Sawmill, at Swindon Works. In the book ‘It Can Now Be Revealed' it is documented that the GWR ‘made 27,157 timber components and 13,700 packing timbers as well as other parts' for Bailey Bridges. The Bailey bridge was developed by Donald Bailey who worked for the British War Office. They were portable, pre fabricated structures that were used extensively during the war and were strong enough even to carry a tank. As this image shows, the parts for a Bailey bridge were simple, but they had to be precisely manufactured in order to fit together correctly and an essential test for the manufacturers, including Swindon Works, was to assemble a bridge in the workshops to ensure this was the case.