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LMSS Masthead

Fostering Interest in Research & Modelling of the London, Midland & Scottish Railway


A Record of Large-Scale Organisation and Management,


The L.M.S. is the largest hotel owner in Europe. In 1923 the company took over 40 hotels, refreshment rooms at over 100 stations and the restaurant car services. Four of the hotels were subsequently found to be redundant or obsolete and were closed, but two new ones were opened and three were completely rebuilt, including the Queen's Hotel at Leeds, which is probably the most modern hotel of its kind in the country. Extensive modernisation schemes were carried out in all the remaining hotels. The company's tourist hotels became of world renown and attracted visitors to this country from abroad, while the hotels at the stations in the great cities were increasingly used by travellers in the course of their journeys. A novelty was the new holiday camp at Prestatyn which was very popular before the war and has now been transferred to Thos. Cook & Son, who were part owners in 1939.

The refreshment room services were reorganised and the facilities were made more accessible to passengers in the trains by the use of tea kiosks, serving windows on platforms and trolley services. At Leeds a combined refreshment room and waiting room, with a separate licensed bar, was introduced. The war, however, interrupted the extensive programme of development which had been decided upon.

The restaurant car services were extended and the design of the cars and the catering methods improved. Facilities of all kinds in the way of meals and light refreshments were provided on the principal trains. Moreover, the company undertook to an increasing extent the provision of meals at low prices on excursion trains and services for sporting events.

The extent of this department's activities is shown by the fact that about 50,000,000 customers were served in 1938.

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