Tony Steadman interviewed by Claire Cohen


Oral history interview with Tony Steadman conducted and recorded by Claire Cohen on 19 June 2012, at the National Railway Museum. Duration: 1 hour 11 minutes. [Track 01] Background, birth [00:00:36] [end of track 01] [Track 02] Initial involvement with National Railway Museum; volunteer group emanating from friends of museum; interviewed by Dr Lowe [00:02:30] [end of track 02] [Track 03] his occupations and availability [00:01:00] [end of track 03] [Track 04] how he heard of volunteering at museum; Dr Lowe’s interview; organised rosters; 1990 concrete degradation in Great Hall; station hall opened; he was asked to be coordinator in 1990; continued till 2000 [00:04:48] [end of track 04] [Track 05] 1990, 1950’s concrete was deteriorating, clearing Great Hall of artefacts; moved to Great Railway Show and NRM on tour; Mallard moved to Swindon; move lasted a year; [00:05:00] John Coiley retired in 1992; changes in museum, Great Hall technical and Station Hall social [00:08:24] [end of track 05] [Track 06] Bill Greenwood asked Tony to be volunteer coordinator; relationship between volunteers and staff; [00:05:00] Information Point started 1992; Tuesday night team with Richard Gibbon; ad hoc activities; Chris Allender and Clare Evans involvement; first duty on miniature railway in 1995 [00:10:27] [end of track 06] [Track 07] creation of volunteer committee, deciding projects; Miniature railway; Bob Gwynne visited America; introduced awards for volunteer service; incentive to keep volunteering; Matt Hick and Christmas dinner with awards; NMSI at forefront of volunteering; staff and volunteers; short term contracts for museum staff [00:11:18] [end of track 07] [Track 08] comparison of security staff then and now (2012); Tony stepped down in 2010; volunteer trips arranged from 1998; NYMR with Great Western saloon; [00:05:00] Matt Hick arranged trips, volunteers outings, first one to York station, Cedar Grand, St Pancras; [00:10:00] Tony now organises trips; Railfest, crisis management; [00:15:00] best part of volunteering is management and training; Worse moment was with A4’s and rain in the North Yard; Andrew Scott; [00:20:00] changes in Health and Safety over the years; public announcements over time; [00:25:00] Personal information, secrecy; best of time was relaxing away from work; value of volunteer work worth to the museum; letters of appreciation [00:31:33] [end of track 08] [end of interview]

Oral history recording made as part of a NRM oral history of volunteering initiative led by NRM volunteering team between 2012 and 2015, with the aim to record the voices of people sharing their volunteering experiences at the National Railway Museum, including NRM colleagues supervising volunteers.


Corporate Archive
Object Number:
oral history interview