LNER flashes back to 1920s at Grantham station as part of 100 year celebrations
A train company surprised Grantham rail passengers by flashing back to the 1920s as part of its 100 years celebrations.
LNER celebrates 100 years this year and yesterday (Thursday) staff from across the country were dressed in 1920s attire to recreate a train station from the era.
Alongside a live band, there were posters from the time on display, a timeline showcasing the history of LNER, a photo exhibition and free goodies on offer.
David Horne, managing director of LNER, paid a visit to Grantham station on the day and dressed as a station master from the time.
He said it was “wonderful to be able to include Grantham in our 100 year celebrations.”
He added: “It’s a perfect place to do it because it has an important place in railway history.
“[The event] is a fantastic bit of fun and is a way of reminding us of all of the people that have worked for the railway over the years.”
Customers passing through the station were given a tote bag, a pin badge marking the 100 years, some chocolate goodies and also a newspaper highlighting some moments from LNER’s history.
One customer, who wished to remain anonymous, said the event was “charming”.
She added: “They’re obviously very passionate about the trains and you notice that when you come to the station.
“The staff always seem to enjoy what they do.”
LNER was formed on January 1, 1923, and across this year, a number of events have been held to mark the centenary.
Penny Bond, who works for LNER internal communications, was one of the organisers behind the Grantham event.
She said: “We picked Grantham because it’s quite historic.
“It was all about surprising and delighting our customers. It’s about giving back to them because they are the heart of our business.
“It’s also about the celebrations and involving our customers. It’s a momentous milestone.”
Railway experts, including historian Dr David Turner and John Clayson, who co-runs Tracks Through Grantham with Mel Smith, were on hand to talk about the importance of Grantham in railway history.
Dr Turner said: “It’s about celebrating railway heritage and history.
“People have a fondness for it and they have a connection in it, especially in railway towns like Grantham.
“These are long-standing railway communities that have a connection with the railway and I think we need to celebrate our railway history and heritage.”
John provided photos in a waiting room at the station that will remain on display permanently.
The photos were taken by John’s father during the 1960s.
He said: “I think it’s really good that a company like LNER is celebrating 100 years.
“It’s really heartwarming to see that they are celebrating and that so much effort has been put into it.”
Grantham has a prominent place in railway history due to its connections to destinations such as London King’s Cross.
The original station was based in Old Wharf Road, which opened on July 15, 1850 when the Ambergate, Nottingham, Boston and Eastern Junction railway opened its line.
The station moved to its current location in Station Road in 1854.
Mayor of Grantham, Councillor Mark Whittington, also stopped by on the day and said the photo exhibition was like a “window back in time”.
He added: “It’s really good and really nice to see LNER celebrating 100 years.
“It is great to see the photos. It seemed like a different world back then.”
LNER also spoke about the celebration day in a recent podcast at https://shows.acast.com/lners-the-fast-track/episodes/a-journey-back-in-time.
The episode features in a podcast centered around the 100 year celebrations.