Guard’s Hand Lamp

Accession number: 20834
Location: Small Objects Store
Built: 1940-50

Background Information

This oil lamp was used by a train guard for multiple purposes and had a rotating coloured inner section to give a red, green or white light.

All railway vehicles had to show a white light at the front and red at the back. This was an important safety feature and if a signalman could not see a red light then the train should be stopped to make sure it had not split and left wagons or carriages blocking the track for the following train to hit.

Lamps were also used to light stations and in signals, where they needed to be filled and tended daily.