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Author Topic: The Grove, Watford  (Read 856 times)
Gordon the Blue Engine
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« on: December 07, 2019, 12:37:17 pm »

The NATO summit last week was held at The Grove, Watford, which used to be a British Railways Training Centre.  Very nice it was too, with extensive grounds, nice food etc.  I did several courses there including the Quality 500 course in the 1980’s which was part of the major Quality Through People initiative which, I think, was very successful despite initial scepticism from some.

Happy memories!
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SandTEngineer
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« Reply #1 on: December 07, 2019, 01:21:25 pm »

I once used to look after the road traffic lights in the grounds there, and quite often got a free lunch......
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Out of this nettle, Danger, we pluck this flower, Safety.
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Gordon the Blue Engine
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« Reply #2 on: December 07, 2019, 01:42:01 pm »

Yes, I remember them - they were either side of the single track hump back bridge on the (very long) drive.  We weren't allowed taxis in the early days so it was the bus from Watford Junction and then a long walk up that drive.
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RichardB
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« Reply #3 on: December 07, 2019, 01:51:00 pm »

I just went there the once - a Public Affairs course in 91 or so.  Pleased I did.
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Gordon the Blue Engine
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« Reply #4 on: December 07, 2019, 05:06:06 pm »

Thinking of The Grove reminds me of, one evening after dinner, someone making a pass at one of the waitresses young enough to be his daughter. She smiled and walked away.

The next evening she was serving him and dropped an apple crumble and custard on his lap.  “Oh sorry” she said , smiled and walked away.

That’s how girls looked after themselves before the snowflake generation.
« Last Edit: December 07, 2019, 05:20:09 pm by Gordon the Blue Engine » Logged
Richard Fairhurst
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« Reply #5 on: December 07, 2019, 05:07:57 pm »

I used to work for British Waterways at their Willow Grange, Watford head office. It always rankled that BW got the premises next to the West Coast Main Line, while BR got the (much nicer) premises next to the Grand Union Canal...
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Witham Bobby
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« Reply #6 on: December 07, 2019, 07:27:33 pm »

I hope I can say this without getting a visit from the boys and girls of Special Branch - "GROVE" and "DEEPDENE" were telegraphic code abbreviations in use on the railways  of yore.  These codes referred to the operation of the Royal Train.  I guess no more strange than having codes for wagons such as "BLOATER" or "ELEPHANT" meaning "Can you trace receipt of ..."

I think that both The Grove and Deepdene were both properties used by the railway at some time
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CyclingSid
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« Reply #7 on: December 08, 2019, 08:25:59 am »

Off the top of my head, without the appropriate reference to hand, Deepdene was the war time (and after?) emergency HQ for Southern Railway/Region.
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RichardB
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« Reply #8 on: December 08, 2019, 11:10:51 am »

Off the top of my head, without the appropriate reference to hand, Deepdene was the war time (and after?) emergency HQ for Southern Railway/Region.

Yes, Deepdene House in Dorking.  Evidently now the site of Kuoni's UK HQ.
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1st fan
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« Reply #9 on: December 08, 2019, 02:08:11 pm »

I hope I can say this without getting a visit from the boys and girls of Special Branch - "GROVE" and "DEEPDENE" were telegraphic code abbreviations in use on the railways  of yore.  These codes referred to the operation of the Royal Train.  I guess no more strange than having codes for wagons such as "BLOATER" or "ELEPHANT" meaning "Can you trace receipt of ..."

I think that both The Grove and Deepdene were both properties used by the railway at some time
Given there's a copy of the working instructions on eBay (and I have no connection to the listing) I think you're safe. Wink

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/113937968241?ViewItem=&item=113937968241
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CyclingSid
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« Reply #10 on: December 08, 2019, 02:08:46 pm »

Thanks RichrdB
From "Britain's Railways in Wartime". https://historicengland.org.uk/images-books/publications/britains-railways-in-wartime
...SR moved into the Regency house of Deepdene, near Dorking, ...underground caves were adapted into a bunker for the telephone exchange and Traffic Control.

GWR moved into six country houses west of Reading, with Beenham Grange at Aldermaston as the HQ. The LMS took over The Grove near Watford. The LNER moved into The Hoo near Hitchin.
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eightf48544
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« Reply #11 on: December 08, 2019, 02:33:17 pm »

Remember the Grove well 6 week Work Study course Feb 68. Consequently i can study wok all day long!

Als0 College at Derby.
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jdw.wor
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« Reply #12 on: December 08, 2019, 03:55:11 pm »

Another memory of the Grove, whilst a Management Trainee 73-75, was the decently stocked cellar they had and all at liver damaging prices!
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Witham Bobby
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« Reply #13 on: December 08, 2019, 03:56:14 pm »


Given there's a copy of the working instructions on eBay (and I have no connection to the listing) I think you're safe. Wink

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/113937968241?ViewItem=&item=113937968241

Phew!

These instructions were delivered by the Area Manager or an AAM only a matter of less than an hour before the Royal Train was due to pass a signalbox or station, and removed soon afterwards.  They were not left lying around at all.  This was in the days of the IRA terror.  This copy must be something of a rarity.
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RichardB
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« Reply #14 on: December 09, 2019, 07:30:53 am »

Remember the Grove well 6 week Work Study course Feb 68. Consequently i can study wok all day long!

Als0 College at Derby.


Off tangent, I've always wondered what happened to Work Study - it was huge on BR in the 60s but I'm not sure it exists at all now. 
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