For enthusiasts, researchers and modellers of the Great Eastern Railway

Collecting Policy

The scope and coverage of the GERS Collection is precisely the same as the general areas of interest of the Society itself. It covers the Great Eastern Railway and its predecessors and successors to the present day. Also included are items related to the other independent railways in the broad GER area – the London, Tilbury & Southend; Colne Valley & Halstead; Mid-Suffolk Light; Southwold; Wissington Railway and so on. Also included is the North London Railway between Broad Street and the Poplar and Docks area. Although the NLR now has its own historical society, the material contained in the GERS Collection principally relates to infrastructure where there is considerable overlap with GER/LT&SR lines The Midland & Great Northern Joint Railway has had its own historical study groups since before the founding of the GERS: Although a small amount of relevant material is retained in the GERS Collection, it consists of fairly general items that are duplicated elsewhere, and which have come to the Society as part of other donations. With all of these subsidiary subjects, material is again collected from their predecessors to the present day.

The Society has always relied upon the donation of material to expand the Collection. Nevertheless, there are now few subjects or time periods that are not catered for. In certain instances, the Society has exceptionally taken the chance to purchase historical material that might otherwise be lost to the public domain, or split between other collections. Such purchases are funded from sales of duplicate, surplus and irrelevant material.

When offered an item for the Collection, it is GERS practice that it will be accepted, provided that it is relevant to our collection policy, and does not duplicate material already held. The latter point has become more important as the Collection has expanded. On several occasions, the Society has been offered an item that duplicates an item already held, but which is in better condition than the original. Thus, the Society will now establish what the donor wishes to be done with an item if the opportunity should arise to replace it with a duplicate of superior quality in the future. In many cases the donors have kindly instructed the Society to sell the item, and use the proceeds for the up-keep of the Collection as a whole. Needless to say, this is the kind of instruction that the Society would prefer to be given! As a result, we are able to undertake much-needed professional conservation work on the more-deserving items in the Collection.

Lyn D. Brooks

GERS Collection Archivist

May 2018