Sunday, 30 October 2011

Swindon's Hooter

The Great Western Railway works has brought many things to Swindon. Industry, wealth, people and probably the most important thing, memories. For those who used to work on the railways, the sound of the hooter is something they will never forget. This hooter used to blast across Swindon as a call to work. The sound used to cut across the town and the countryside to ensure employees of the works were ready to get into work.

The hooter blasted at several other points during the day, letting people know it was time to start lunch, finish lunch, stop work and so forth. It was the sound of the town right up until 1986 when the twin brass hooters blew for the last time.

Graham Mack is a presenter on BBC Wiltshire. With the help of local people he is on a mission to get the hooter blowing again. Graham isn't from Swindon but just wants to learn more about what made the town what it is today. When it comes to the hooter it's all about local knowledge. Many of Swindonions have been on the case to help track down the whereabouts of the hooter and the possibility of rekindling the sound of the railways.

My family have lived in Swindon for generations. My Grampy worked on the Railways and my Grandma worked at Wills Cigarettes. They both remember the hooter so I thought I'd pay them a visit to find out more...

Swindon GWR Hooter by bribriwilliam

I think there are many people,not just in Swindon, like my Grandparents Colin (91) and Sybil (86) Humphries, that would like to hear the hooter again. It will bring the memories of the railway back to those who worked in Swindon decades ago. But it will also bring a sense of appreciation and identity to a younger generation that know little about Swindon's industrial past.

I'll keep you updated as to whether Graham ever gets the hooter blowing again.

No comments:

Post a Comment