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Les Hoath kindly wrote... "Whilst tidying up a few things yesterday, I came across an article regarding a Nine Elms Driver (Fred Woofhan), which was written by Jim Marsh ex Nine Elms fireman."

The tale of FRED WOOFAM
As related to Jim Marsh Ex Nine Elms fireman

There was a certain driver at Nine Elms who had been taken off the main line, in his words, "for speeding". On this particular day he had 34061 (73 Squadron), and for some unknown reason he was about 30 minutes late at Worting Junction. He later showed me his "charge sheet". He travelled from Worting Junction to Queens Road (where he was stopped by the guard), a distance of 48 miles in 32 minutes, or 90mph. The guard thought the train was a 'runaway' and going round Clapham Junction applied the brakes hard. The driver was trying unsuccessfully 'to blow it off', so he stopped at Queens Road. I remember him saying 'Ah, the guard got scared'. The charge sheet alleged (how I do not know) that his estimated speed through Woking was 108mph. The driver retorted: "Ah, but they should have seen me at Fleet"! He finished his days in Nine Elms goods yard on the diesels.

Extracts taken from the book "STEAM FROM WATERLOO" By Colonel H.C. Rogers Published 1984.

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