Mis-spelt Yarmouth sign up for auction

Anthony CarrollA misspelt part of Great Yarmouth's railway heyday could fetch up to �1,000 at an auction for train enthusiasts on Saturday.The British Railways Eastern Region blue enamel sign points the way to the town's Vauxhall and 'South Town' railway stations.Anthony Carroll

A misspelt part of Great Yarmouth's railway heyday could fetch up to �1,000 at an auction for train enthusiasts on Saturday.

The British Railways Eastern Region blue enamel sign points the way to the town's Vauxhall and 'South Town' railway stations.

Its auction may cause Yarmouth residents to scratch their heads in confusion as they have grown up knowing that the area of the resort should be one word - Southtown.

The 'one word or two' debate has gone on among locals for many years but most now use the single word Southtown, with no gap.


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The station opened in 1859 and closed in 1970 and was originally a terminus for the East Suffolk Railway from London and then served east coast passengers going to Lowestoft.

It is now the site of some large stores and a garage off Station road.

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Yarmouth's Vauxhall station was built as a terminus for the Yarmouth and Norwich line in 1844 and is now the town's only remaining station - known to commuters as Yarmouth station.

Up to 1959 Yarmouth had three stations until the Yarmouth Beach terminus closed that year.

Auction organiser Railwayana Auctioneers, of Gloucestershire, said that so far four people had expressed an interest in the direction sign, including someone in Norwich.

Normally an enamel sign would fetch about �500 but because the 28in by 13in sign is rare and in excellent condition it could go for about �1,000 when it goes under the hammer on Saturday.

Auctioneer Paul Booth said: 'The Yarmouth sign will conjure up many memories and is attracting some strong interest already.'

The auction brochure describes the sign as 'A BR (E) flanged street direction enamel Vauxhall and South Stations with arrow pointing left. With small BR totem at the top. Size 28in x 13in.

'Excellent colour and condition. Never been offered in auction before.'

The sign is one of 300 lots of railway memorabilia up for auction at the St Leonards Social Club in St Leonard's Avenue, Stafford. Other items include signs for Tooting, Swindon and Stevenage.

For more information, call Mr Booth on 01242 620020 or 07836 225711 or visit www.railwayana. com.

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