The story of Sir Richard Cresswell, the railway enthusiast who was killed by an unknown assailant on the Great Western Railway in the 1890s, is being told in the latest edition of the Lad Bible.
The Lad Bible, which is published by Lad Publishing House, includes extracts from Cressworth’s diary entries from that time, as well as his recollections of his time on the railways.
A number of these are reproduced here in the original, although some of them are updated with information that may have been removed from the original edition.
One of the earliest recorded entries is a handwritten note from Cesswell on the day of his death.
“I have died at the age of 72,” he wrote.
“My body is lying in the yard of the home on the outskirts of Derby.
The door of the house is open, and it is not hard to find a man in it.
There are several hundred yards between me and it, and the place is full of persons.
I am very tired, as I am in no condition to do any work, but am content with the state I have been in for the past seven years.”
Cresswell was a member of the Northern Railway Club, and one of its founding members, who is now 91.
He died on the 29th January 1893.
The Lad’s journey to the end of the worldThe most famous of Cresswills travels was to the point where he eventually came to the conclusion that he would never be able to get on the train again.
But despite all his physical difficulties, he had made the most of it.
His diary entries show he was able to sleep through most of the day, even in the worst of weather.
Cresswill’s journey started on the 16th August 1891.
It took him nearly three months, with some travelling on foot and others by horse.
He would sometimes be in a rush, even travelling at night, to reach the terminus at Clapham.
In January 1893, he reached the junction of the Thames and the Severn, which was a point he was confident he would not be able withstanding, even though the Thames River had a tendency to rise.
This led him to the belief that he was going to drown.
After a few days on the Thames, Cresswick had to cross over a bridge that had collapsed, and had to stop for a few hours.
At the same time, he made several attempts to cross the Severely ill with his horse, but they would not get across.
Cressworth was also worried about the weather, and decided to wait until the next day.
On the evening of the 17th September 1893, the weather turned and it was clear.
He stopped at a house called St Andrew’s, where he bought a small houseboat for the night.
He had already planned to take his horse back to the railway station, but he would have to wait at least two days before he could get on board.
Around 7.30pm, Cressesworth’s horse, which he had been riding on since the morning, started to show signs of weakness.
As the clock struck 7:15pm, the horse suddenly stopped breathing, and his horse collar was hanging down.
There were no signs of life on the horse, and he was rushed to the hospital.
Although he was in a lot of pain, Cords was given a second opinion.
According to his journal entry, he thought he had suffered a heart attack.
However, as he recovered, his horse became much stronger and, after three hours, he was taken off life support.
Even though the horse had not died, Cessworth had become seriously ill and was taken to the Great South Coast Hospital.
Following this, he spent the next several months in intensive care.
Eventually, his condition improved, and doctors decided he was fit to be put on ventilators.
He was placed on life support again on the 18th November 1893, and after five months on life-support, he died at 6.30am on the 26th January, the day before he was due to be transferred to the Royal Marsden Hospital in London.
Cressesworth was one of the first railwaymen to die in the Great War, and many others were killed on the Western Railway.
Among his victims was Sir Peter Cresswood, the first man to cross into the Channel, on the 10th February, 1914.
Sir Peter Cesswood’s family were left devastated, with his mother being in intensive hospital after the tragedy.
When the accident happened, the family had to rebuild their lives and Cresswill’s family became a small business, producing a number of books.
During his life, Cisswell had published more than 30 books, which include several works of fiction and poetry.
Sources: The Lad