Tributes in blue

Photo:Several North Lainers attended: Chris Littledale (Director of Brighton Toy & Model Museum, Trafalgar Street), Geoffrey Mead (Associate Member of the NLCA), Gabrielle Villermet (NLCA rep on Commemorative Plaques Panel), Jackie Fuller (North Laine Runner editor), Averil Older (Chair of the Commemorative Plaques Panel) and Tig Savage (Manager of the Toy & Model Museum).

Several North Lainers attended: Chris Littledale (Director of Brighton Toy & Model Museum, Trafalgar Street), Geoffrey Mead (Associate Member of the NLCA), Gabrielle Villermet (NLCA rep on Commemorative Plaques Panel), Jackie Fuller (North Laine Runner editor), Averil Older (Chair of the Commemorative Plaques Panel) and Tig Savage (Manager of the Toy & Model Museum).

Photo by Henry Bruce

Photo:Plaque to David Mocatta (1806-1882)

Plaque to David Mocatta (1806-1882)

Photo by Henry Bruce

Photo:Plaque to John Saxby (1821-1913)

Plaque to John Saxby (1821-1913)

Photo by Henry Bruce

New plaques commemorating Mocatta and Saxby

By Gabrielle Villermet, NLCA representative on Commemorative Plaques Panel

Two new commemorative blue plaques were unveiled in Brighton Station on Friday 8th August 2014. They were to David Mocatta (1806-1882) and John Saxby (1821-1913).

David Mocatta

David Mocatta was the architect for the London & Brighton Railway. His designs include Brighton, Haywards Heath, Horley and Hassocks stations. The best surviving example is the Grade II* listed Mocatta building at Brighton Station. In 2013 the Railway Heritage Trust renovated the Mocatta building and remodelled the concourse and it now looks splendid.

John Saxby

John Saxby worked for the London, Brighton & South Coast Railway before setting up in business in Haywards Heath in 1856 designing signalling equipment. He is credited with designing the interlocking signalling system that is still in use today worldwide. In 1901 his business merged to create the Westinghouse Brake & Signal Company.

A fitting tribute

It is fitting that both their plaques are on public display in Brighton Station.

Present at the unveiling

Present at the ceremony to mark the unveiling were Deputy Mayor of Brighton & Hove, Cllr Denise Cobb; Averil Older, Chair of the Commemorative Plaques Panel; members of the Panel; Beth Holbrook, Southern Station Manager; representatives from the Railway Heritage Trust, Southern, and local history societies.

Family representatives

We were very pleased to welcome members of the Mocatta and Saxby families.

A Council-led panel

Averil Older explained that the Commemorative Plaque Panel is Council-led but run by volunteers from various amenity societies from Brighton & Hove. The Panel receives numerous nominations for blue plaques every year but the Council can only fund one per year. Private funding/sponsorship is always welcome.

They contributed to Brighton's success

She also said: “Both Saxby and Mocatta contributed greatly to the success of Brighton as a holiday resort. The trains bringing visitors to our city today are a testament to their efforts in the past.”

The funding

The Saxby plaque was funded by Brighton & Hove City Council and the Mocatta plaque by Southern Rail and the Brighton & Hove Hebrew Congregation.

Thanks to Southern Rail

We are grateful to Beth Holbrook and Southern Rail for organising the event and providing a wonderful buffet.

 

[Previously published in the North Laine Runner, No 230, September/October 2014]

This page was added on 13/10/2014.

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