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GWR Route: Banbury to Wolverhampton

Hockley Station: gwrhd2663

The 1934 GWR revised Railhead Distribution Booklet detailing the facilities available for large commercial customers

In 1934 the Great Western Railway issued a revised Railhead Distribution Booklet which detailed the facilities available for large commercial customers. The following extract from ‘Guide to Economical Transport’ describes this service:

Intimately linked with the Company’s warehouse facilities are the specialised railhead delivery services known as railhead distribution schemes, which have been developed in recent years at the principal centres of the Great Western Railway.

By means of express freight services giving early next morning arrivals at Bristol, Cardiff, Swansea, Birmingham and Exeter. Goods are transported from the producers to the railheads, where they are immediately sorted and delivered to customers throughout an area of 30 miles’ radius. Fleets of express cartage vehicles are specially allocated to perform this delivery of stocks direct to the shop, so that retailers in remote districts are assured of next-day deliveries, and the maintenance by them of large stocks is eliminated.

In addition to actual distribution the Company will arrange for the collection and return of empties, the issue of credit notes, and the maintenance of stocks.

The Senders secure the benefit of savings in packing and carriage costs consequent upon the bulking of consignments to the railhead.

By arrangement a number of firms whose business necessitates the full-time employment of cartage vehicles have had the Great Western distributing vans painted in their own colours, with their trade names, whilst the railway staff wear the firm’s liveries. Quite apart from its advertising value, this arrangement conveys the impression to customers that the delivery is being effected by the sender’s own motors.

Robert Ferris