A large, 9 ¾” tall, UNIQUE, impressive, reform flask with Rockingham type glaze. The front is stamped “William IV’ths Reform Cordial” and on the back “Henry Cooper Brighton Railway Station”. We have not been able to find any concrete information on it. A publican by the name of Henry Cooper worked in a few different pubs in London in the late 19th century and a railway worker by that same name worked at Brighton Station around the turn of the century. Maybe some connection? The 1861, 1871, and 1881 censuses show several Henry Coopers living in Brighton during those times. This very hefty flask is in perfect condition with the normal kiln imperfections. The thumbprint of the potter can also be found on its base, see photo. This is the only example noted to date and a very rare commemorative piece of stoneware indeed. It surely warrants additional research. You may never see another!
BRIGHTON STATION HISTORY AND DEVELOPMENT
The London and Brighton Railway built a passenger station, goods station, locomotive depot and railway works on a difficult site on the northern edge of Brighton. This site was a half mile from, and seventy feet above the sea shore, and had involved considerable excavation work to create a reasonable gradient from Patcham Tunnel.
Passenger station The station forecourt showing Mocatta’s original building which is now largely obscured.
The passenger station was a three storey building in an Italianate style, designed by David Mocatta in 1839–40 which incorporated the head office of the railway company. (This building still stands but has been largely obscured by later additions.) The platform accommodation was built by John Urpeth Rastrick and consisted of four pitched roofs each 250 ft long (76 m). Mocatta and Rastrick were also the architect and engineers of the picturesque Ouse Valley Viaduct north of Brighton.
The station site was extended in the 19th century but only a limited number of additional platforms could be added because of the awkward sloping site. However, by the late 1870s the facilities were inadequate for the growing volume of traffic and so the existing platforms were lengthened to be able to accommodate two trains, and the three separate roofs were replaced by an overall roof during 1882/1883.
￼The station roof as refurbished.
The station currently has a large double-spanned curved glass and iron roof covering the platforms, which was substantially renovated in 1999 and 2000.
At the front of the station is a taxi rank and a bus station. A tunnel runs under the station which once provided an open-air cab run at shallower gradient than Trafalgar Street outside, which had been the main approach to the station before the construction of Queen's Road (which was financially supported by the railway, and intended to improve access). The cab run was covered (forming a tunnel) when the station above was extended over it on cast iron columns. The cab run remains in situ but has been sealed at the station end.
A goods station and yard was also constructed on the eastern side of the passenger station but on a site 30 ft lower (9.1 m) due to the sloping site, which was initially accessed from the Shoreham line by a second tunnel under the passenger station. The tunnel entrance was filled in after new tracks were laid into the goods yard, but a portion of it was converted into offices during World War II, and these were in use until the early 21st century. (A portion of the tunnel is still used by a local rifle club.) The site of the goods yard has since been redeveloped, and much of it forms the New England Quarter.
Locomotive and carriage works:
To the north of the station, on the East side of the main line, the railway constructed its locomotive and carriage works, which operated from 1841 until 1911, when the carriage works was moved to Lancing and 1957 when the locomotive works closed. Thereafter Isetta cars were briefly built in a part of the works.
The London and Brighton Railway opened a small locomotive shed and servicing facility at to the north-west of the station for locomotives on the Shoreham line, in May 1840, and another, adjacent to the locomotive works for main line locomotives, the following year. During 1860–1861 John Chester Craven, the Locomotive Superintendent of the London Brighton and South Coast Railway (LB&SCR) began the removal of a large chalk hill to the north of the station, which had been dumped during the excavation of the main line. The space created was used to accommodate a new much enlarged motive power depot in 1861, replacing the two existing facilities. During the early 1930s, following the electrification of the lines the steam motive power depot was rebuilt and reduced in size. It was closed 15 June 1961, but remained in use for stabling steam locomotives until 1964, and was demolished in 1966.
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