Concourse V Boards
The construction of the new canopy has meant that the concourse has had to be completely cleared of all signage and artefacts. This has given an ideal opportunity to revamp and restore many of these items. Some such items are the V boards that are situated above the entrances to various facilities at the station. These were in desperate need of attention. The paint was peeling, wood rotten, and some had even come apart. I therefore volunteered to work on one, rather appropriately the ladies waiting room which I believe to be original GWR.
At first glance a "lick of paint" was all that was needed. Stripping off the layers of old paint revealed the real state of the boards. One seemed to be made up of large areas of filler and I'm sure the other was held together with paint. They were also quite damp. Removing the paint and keeping them indoors in the Storage Shed has allowed them to dry out. To rectify the weakened joints Mick made metal "L" shaped pieces that were let into the frames on the reverse of the boards. With the final top coats of white lettering on a black background the finished V board is now ready to be fitted.
Some of the other V boards were too rotten and deteriorated to be used again so Steve M. has spent some time constructing new ones. Other Friends including Jack and Bob L. have also been involved in the preparation and painting of other boards. As there are nine pairs of boards on the concourse this has proven to be a time-consuming task for all those involved. The boards will now be under cover of course, which should mean that with regular painting they should last indefinitely.
Brintons Hand Cart Update
Firstly, my apologies for missing out the date of closure Brintons Carpets town centre factory in the last issue. I have since found out that between 1995 and 2000 the company gradually transferred looms from this site in preparation for closure. The Brintons Bull (the factory hooter) was finally sounded in on 18th March 1999, signalling the last shift. The acquisition of the cart was reported in the February 2000 newsletter.
The hand cart is now finished and ready to go on display when the station concourse is complete. It will serve as a reminder of Kidderminster's carpet manufacturing history and its link with the original GWR station.
Ladies Waiting Room
Mark and Bob L. began the refurbishment of the waiting room by tiling the main sink area. Firstly all the old and damaged tiles were removed and the surface prepared. Around 360 new tiles were then laid. This large job had to be completed fairly quickly to avoid causing too much inconvenience for passengers. Work was therefore done during the quiet week days in February and of course the regular Tuesday evenings.
Bob now joined by Millie, (Steve Millington), moved his attention to the walls in the lobby of the waiting room, (a welcome change to working on the floor). This has included painting all the woodwork of the doors and window frames too. Bob found himself spending time scraping off old paint from the glass first, to get a first class finish. The tiling of the lobby floor took place at the end of April. This was completed on days when there was no service running and therefore no ladies needing to use the room. Keith and Mark (right) worked hard on that job. Now it is all hands on deck to complete the painting in the main sink and cubical area.