This substantial collection relating to the London & North Eastern Railway is in three main parts: photographic material; research notes and files by Mr Yeadon; and original railway company records.
The photographic collection is very extensive, with over 31000 photographs present. The bulk of these are held in a series of photograph albums (U DYE/1/2 - 135) as arranged by Yeadon in several sequences: LNER locomotives (in class order); LNER trains (again in locomotive class order); and aspects of LNER locomotives and trains, including named trains, liveries, exhibitions and parades, and so on. Each album has been meticulously assembled, with the photographs accompanied by detailed and very informative hand - written notes. This is followed (U DYE/1/136 - 177) by several thousand individual photographs which were categorised by Yeadon on a thematic or subject basis, such as 'Great Northern Railway', 'Hull & Barnsley Railway', or 'Tenders'. As with the contents of the albums, these photographs were obtained by Mr Yeadon from multifarious sources, and the provenance is usually indicated, frequently with brief notes. However, many specimens have no accompanying information. Accordingly, Mr Yeadon's rough classification has been retained. General details about the contents of each batch of photographs are provided in the list of the collection, but it has not been possible to catalogue them individually.
Section 2 comprises research notebooks, files and other research papers by WB Yeadon. The division between this section and section 3 (original LNER records) is somewhat arbitrary, as Mr Yeadon had a habit of inter - filing his own and original material, and also of continuing and updating (in some cases even correcting) the contents of original LNER records. This section is in itself a potentially rich source for railway historians. It includes the core working notebooks for Yeadon's 'Register of LNER locomotives' (in 9 volumes at U DYE/2/1 - 9). There are also copies of various boiler registers (U DYE/2/10 - 15), and particularly extensive notes and files on locomotive shed allocations (U DYE/2/22 - 28) and locomotive/ tender numbering (U DYE/2/29 - 35). Files relating to the Hull area (U DYE/2/41 - 42) inevitably contain much valuable documentary and statistical information, plus facsimiles of original documents.
The third section is again a very varied artificial collection of original LNER records acquired by Mr Yeadon from various sources. Most of it was literally thrown away (or on the point of being thrown away) by staff at workshops at Doncaster, Darlington and elsewhere, and would have been lost but for Mr Yeadon's intervention. The material has been roughly ordered in this catalogue on the basis of type (such as registers, locomotive repairs, special fittings, liveries, and so on) rather than of provenance - largely because a fair proportion of the items are effectively anonymous. Also, most sections have been arranged purely in date order, thereby presenting the logical progression from pre-grouping companies, to the LNER, and then (in some cases) to British Railways, within each category. Particularly significant items include GNR stock registers from 1896 (U DYE/3/2 - 3); AC Stamer's list of NER locomotives, dated 1920, but covering the period 1864 - 1952 (U DYE/3/1); and Darlington construction orders, starting in 1923, with some signed by the LNER's Chief Mechanical Engineer, Sir Nigel Gresley (U DYE/3/13).
There are numerous locomotive repair records from both the Darlington and Doncaster workshops, including several hundred repair records for individual locomotives between the 1920s and 1940s (U DYE/3/14 - 289). Boiler records (including repairs and re - numbering) are also quite extensive, with examples from the ex - Great Central Railway, ex - North Eastern Railway and ex - Great Northern Railway workshops (U DYE/3/290 - 305). The section on special fittings includes records relating to brakes, steam heating, and lubrication (U DYE/3/307 - 315). There are also items relating to locomotive shed allocations and other changes, particularly from the LNER Southern Area (later Eastern Region) based on Liverpool Street Station in London (U DYE/3/316 - 323) and the North - Eastern Area (York) (U DYE/3/324 - 325). The small collection of diagrams and plans includes an Engine diagram book for the Great North of Scotland section from c.1926 (U DYE/3/338) and for the Hull & Barnsley section of the North Eastern Railway in c.1923 (U DYE/3/337), together with a set of some 120 LNER boiler diagrams from the 1930s and in some cases updated to c.1958 (U DYE/3/341), and a volume containing diagrams of 'Specially constructed wagons' probably from the Cowlairs works and dating from about 1930 (U DYE/3/340). Finally in this section, there are a few items derived from employees of the Company, including a notebook compiled by PN Townend - sometime Shed Master at King's Cross Locomotive Depot (Top Shed) - between 1941 and 1945, which includes details of journeys made, and other information (U DYE/3/359). There are also four anonymous logbooks compiled by an ex - Great Central Railway area driver, apparently based in Northwich, between May 1954 and December 1956.
Finally, the small collection of published or printed material includes a Sharpe's corresponding map of the railways of England and Wales dating from 1847 (U DYE/4/1), a copy of the Hull Railway Guide for September 1943 (U DYE/4/6), and a prize specimen - a well-thumbed copy of Risdon Prentice and Peter Proud's 'The Locomotives of the LNER 1923 - 1937' published by the Railway Correspondence and Travel Society in 1941 (U DYE/4/8).