Southport Line II – the 60s (last days of steam)

Houghton’s Lodge offered exceptional fishing

with legends of Jack the elusive monster pike

and young Wilky purportedly capturing a record perch

while neighbouring trains entertained between each strike

 

fishing was never a personal enchantment

but the nature and camaraderie proved paramount

and angling often merged with casual train-spotting 

fish to catch and steam trains to identify and count

 

nature resided there before undue intervention

a paradise on the edge of Marsh Green council estate

flora and fauna flourished and science was added glee

the enormous power of steam towing passengers and freight

 

steam engines were captivating engineering feats

with their carriages along the tracks they sprawled

the rhythmic rumble, the steam, the smoke, the sparks

the spectacle of bulk and authority enthralled

 

on the afternoon that we saw our first diesel train

chatterbox George was briefly silenced and spat

he gulped to find voice and then spoke for us all

when he loudly screamed “what the fuck is that!!!”

◄ Southport Line I – mid 50s to early 60s (childhood)

Southport line III – 1969 (Blackberry Way, A Clockwork Orange, peril and the driver’s face) ►

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