RAY CHURCHILL: 21ST CENTURY MAIN LIME STEAM DRIVER

One of West Coast Railways’ most respected drivers has retired.
Don Benn met him and discussed Ray’s long career on the footplate.

RAY CHURCHILL: 21ST CENTURY MAIN LIME STEAM DRIVER
The last ‘GB’ tour for Ray Churchill, seen with fireman Chris Birmingham at Bristol Temple Meads on April 27. DON BENN
When Ray Churchill stepped off the footplate of LMS ‘Black Five’ 4-6-0 No. 44871 at Crewe in the early afternoon of Thursday April 28 it brought to an end 59 years working on the footplates of steam locomotives, which had started at Bescot shed in 1957.

Although Ray is better known for his recent work driving steam-hauled trips for the West Coast Railway Company (WCR), his career covered much more than that and spanned the years from when the railway was almost fully steam worked through dieselisation and into the era of Privatisation.

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