Since the mid-nineteenth century, Peterborough has been a railway city. The railways helped open up another major industry in the city: bricks. Both brought employment and overall prosperity to the city - particularly when they worked together. Peterborough's bricks only reached across Britain thanks to the railway's ability to effortlessly move large and heavy consignments. A major by-product of the brick industry was fly ash - fine particles coming from brick firing - which can be used in the production of Portland cement. On this Monday there was a fatal accident when, at about 9.20 p.m., a train carrying many hundreds of tons of fly ash ran into the back of a similarly loaded stationary train, just south of Peacock Bridge. In the cab of the train were drivers John Theobald and Joseph Lee, who both died at the scene, and guard Aubrey Dolman. Fifty police and firemen worked through the night under floodlight to free Mr Dolman from the tangled wreckage. Consultant surgeon Denis Bracey from the Memorial Hospital worked with the team from around 4 a.m. until 7 a.m. when, after ten hours, Mr Dolman was finally cut free and taken to the hospital suffering from a broken left leg. (Peterborough Advertiser, Harper-Tee, John, 'The Peterborough Story', Peterborough Evening Telegraph, 1992)
Taken from The Peterborough Book of Days by Brian Jones, The History Press, 2014.