RAILWAY AND INDUSTRIAL HISTORY OF THE SOUTH WEST BLACK COUNTRY

 
 

 

 

 

County Express
incorporating
BRIERLEY HILL, STOURBRIDGE, KIDDERMINSTER & DUDLEY NEWS
SOUTH STAFFORDSHIRE & EAST WORCESTERSHIRE CHRONICLE


Vol. 2, No. 68 ] SATURDAY, 18th., APRIL, 1868 [ Price 1d.

OUR VOLUNTEERS
Annual Volunteer Review in Hagley Park.

The annual Volunteer Review of the 1st. Battalion Worcestershire Rifle Volunteers took place in Hagley Park on Monday. Contrary to what has been for years, the weather was all that could be desired, and the warm sunshine and balmy atmosphere, coupled with the additional fact that to a great many Easter Monday is looked forward to as a holiday, brought together a good number of volunteers, together with a large number of spectators.........

 

Diabolical Attempt to Upset Train

Although everything passed off peacefully at the review, the three Kidderminster, the Wolverley, Bewdley, Tenbury and Stourport volunteers, together with a large number of spectators who had been to the review, had a narrow escape on returning home. One of the most strange attempts at a railway outrage which has ever occurred was made on the Monday afternoon, on the Great Western Railway near Kidderminster. The guilty person is a man well known to travellers on the line between Kidderminster and Birmingham and Wolverhampton, and, so far as appearances go, would be one of the last to form so nefarious a design as we have to describe. The man referred to, Samuel Jenkins, has for a number of years been a passenger guard, and in that capacity his conduct was ever respectful and attentive to travellers. About six weeks ago, in consequence of some misconduct of his in tearing up some papers, he was suspended, and when the matter was brought before the superintendent for the district, Jenkins asked that he might be allowed to resign. Since then he has occasionally been sent about the line, and sometime ago, it is stated, he was found at midnight amongst some trucks at Stourbridge, which were being shunted, and very nearly lost his life. Jenkins on Monday morning, was standing about Kidderminster station, and later in the day he made his way down the line, in the direction of Churchill, and made a most deliberate attempt to throw the next train approaching on the up-line off the rails. Some platelayers who were out of observation saw him place some pieces of iron on the metals. He then went about one hundred yards further along and placed a piece of old metal and a sleeper chair on the rails, and lastly, at about an equal distance further on, he fixed a plate of iron of semicircular shape over the metals and fastened it down by means of a large stone, and some more iron. These obstructions were so placed that an approaching train must, with inevitable certainty, have been thrown off the line. One of the pieces of iron used was a portion of rail about two feet in length, another was a firebar out of an engine, and the semicircular piece of iron spoken of also belonged to an engine. The platelayers, who had seen these extraordinary proceedings of the infatuated man, hastened to the spot, and removed the iron which he had placed there for such a deadly purpose. A fast passenger train running between Stourbridge and Kidderminster without stoppage was due soon afterwards, and subsequently a heavy train bringing volunteers and excursionists from Hagley would have had to pass the spot. Having taken precautions against danger, the men persued Jenkins and ultimately captured him and took him to a public house in Love Lane, near Kidderminster. Mr. Thompson the station-master was appraised of the occurrence.