Items to be found on

Edinburgh Railway Stations

following World War 2




James McEwan

Duddingston Mills, Edinburgh

James McEwan wrote:

Naval Shells and Mines

"You may recall that it was common, possibly as late as the 1970s, to see large diameter naval shells and mines, up-ended, on display in major railway stations with a slot cut out for contributions from the public."


"I can't remember if these donations were intended for the Royal British Legion or some other benevolent society. 

Do you know:

-  Who the donations went to?

-  What became of these shells and mines?

-  Why they were withdrawn?"

James McEwan, Duddingston Mills, Edinburgh


If you know the answers to any of the questions that James asks above, please email me, then I'll add your answers to this page.

Thank you.

Peter Stubbs, Edinburgh:  July 22, 2014




Laurie Thompson

Chipping Sodbury, Gloucestershire, England

Thank you to Laurie Thompson who did a little investigating then wrote:

Naval Shells and Mines

Some Still Exist
but not in Edinburgh

"I was interested to read James McEwan's questions concerning old naval mines and artillery shells used as collection boxes.  I also remember them, but had forgotten all about them.

A quick search of Google reveals that a number of the red-painted sea mines still exist (for example in Maldon, Essex, and Sandown, Isle of Wight), and it seems that they were all used for collections for the Shipwrecked Fishermen's and Mariners' Society.

Apparently - according to newspaper reports available via Google - there used to be one in Montrose up until fairly recently, but local "peace campaigners" successfully lobbied for its removal on the grounds that it was a "Weapon of Mass Destruction". (No, seriously!)

 I'm thinking of tipping off the RAF Museum at Hendon, the Imperial War Museum, and several other museums designed to remind us of the dangers of wars, in case these Montrose campaigners decide that they also want to obliterate any other tangible evidence and memories of the events of 1914-18 and 1939-45.

Google also indicates there is still one of the large artillery shells on Glasgow Central Station, but it doesn't seem that there was a standard charity associated with them. Presumably each collection was tailored to one or more local charities."

Laurie Thompson, Chipping Sodbury, Gloucestershire, England:  22 July, 2014




Gus Coutts

Duddingston, Edinburgh

Thank you to Gus Coutts who replied

Naval Shells and Mines

"I don't know if it's still there but the last time I passed through Glasgow Central in the 80s there was still a 15"or 16" Naval shell situated at the foot of the concourse heading for the main exit."

Models of Railway Engines

"There used to be models of old locomotives in glass cases at Waverley on which the wheels would turn when a penny was inserted.  I think I saw one of them in The Royal Scottish Museum on my last visit."

Machines for Stamping Names on Metal

"I can't remember if there was one at Waverley but many larger stations had machines form which one could produce a punched aluminium strip on which one could produce a message usually one's name."

Yes:  others also remember these machines. - BAC Metal Nameplate Stamping Machines.

 There has been some correspondence about them on this page of the EdinPhoto web site.

   Railway Equipment  -  A BAC nameplate stamping machine.  These were to be found on many station platforms in the 1950s.

Peter Stubbs, Edinburgh:  July 27, 2014

The Only Enterprises

"These were about the only enterprises on stations not connected with actual travelling apart from bookstalls and catering prior to the rise of Railtrack and its conversion to a property company."

Gus Coutts, Duddingston, Edinburgh:  July 23, 2014


Edinburgh at War

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