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Note the badges of the North Eastern Railway under the bay window.

Note the badges of the North Eastern Railway under the bay window.

Not all visitors to arrive in York, I’ve noticed recently, head into town, having passed through the historic city walls, having turned into Station Rise; in fact I’m probably in the minority. Station Rise has always been, in my lifetime, home to The North Eastern Railway Memorial, dedicated to the 2236 men of the company who lost their lives in the Great War, buses coming out of George Hudson Street (named after “The Railway King” George Hudson, railway pioneer, Conservative politician, dubious businessman and debtor) and this impressive Edwardian red brick building, which is now The Grand Hotel and Spa.

A plaque, a piece of history in itself, informed me that, “This building, now the headquarters of British Rail, Eastern Region, was head office of the North Eastern Railway from 1906“. I think I’m right in saying that York became the headquarters of the Eastern Region when it amalgamated with the North Eastern Region in 1967 and ceased to exist in 1992 [but if you’re an expert in these matters, feel free to correct me], so the plaque was already something of a curiosity when I started to notice the plaque when I was a much younger man than I an today!

The badge of the York and North Midland Railway (Top), the badge of the Leeds Northern Railway (left) and the badge of the York Newcastle and Berwick Railway, which formed the North Eastern Railway in 1854.

The badge of the York and North Midland Railway (Top), the badge of the Leeds Northern Railway (left) and the badge of the York Newcastle and Berwick Railway, which formed the North Eastern Railway in 1854.

The plaque also describes the different elements of the North Eastern Railway badge, which is one of the most noticeable ornamental details and can just be seen below the bay window in first photograph and in detail above.

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