Page 4.   Shelvoke & Drewry Enthusiasts' Club Newsletter - Spring 2021.


We were saddened to learn of the deaths of three long serving SD employees.

Tony Corbyn.

Tony Corby is shown above on the right with from the left:- Bob Gill and Roger Morrisroe, at SD remembered on September 12th 2004.

Tony died in January after having to spend several years in residential care. He joined SD as an apprentice in 1955 and then became a Service Engineer. In this position he undertook several overseas visits. I believe he was then appointed as a Service Inspector based at Letchworth. He was among those made redundant in 1991.
On your behalf I have offered our condolences to his family.


Colin Humble.

Colin Humble died on 16th December at his home in Torquay at the age of 92.

Colin told me that he was the last person to be interviewed by Harry Shelvoke when he asked to become an SD apprentice in 1949 following National Service in the Royal Engineers. On completion of his apprenticeship Colin joined the sales force and eventually became Area Sales Manager for the South West Area. He left SD in 1985 and joined NORBA. Colin was highly respected both in the company and by his customers. Your condolences have been offered to Colin’s family. A more detailed tribute to Colin will be found here, including some of the stories he shared with us in rhe magazine and Newsletter:- CLICK HERE.

Dennis Nelson.

Dennis Nelson, a former SD demonstrator driver died on 31st January after a short illness. He was employed from 1960 to 1975 and then moved on to work at Norba. Dennis contributed an article to the Magazine under the title ‘The Suitcase Man.’
We offer our condolences to the families of these former SD employees. His friend Barrie Woods has written tis tribute to Dennis:-

Dennis Nelson 1939 - 2021

With great regret I have to inform you that Dennis Albert Nelson of Archers Way Letchworth, passed away on 31st January 2021.

Since collapsing at his home a few weeks ago, he has been in a nursing home in Wymondley. He was diagnosed with a Brain Tumour which was deemed inoperable, more recently other complications occurred including his being tested positive for Covid.  Mercifully he has not had to suffer very long.
I have known Dennis for some 50 years, we worked together as Demonstration Drivers at Shelvoke & Drewry, in the 1970s, later we both transferred to Norba. He then went on to become an HGV 1 driver for John Lewis where he remained until retiring some 17 years ago. He had been a lifelong member of the Battle of Britain Locomotive Society and member of the Stevenage Locomotive Society for a number of years.
Dennis was never one to socialise very much, but did enjoy a few pints at the local. He never married, but spent his time enjoying his cars, and his other main interest which was his garden, winning prizes for his impressive flower displays. He was always keen on steam traction both main line, preserved and traction engines, all areas that he dedicated himself to.  His other main interest was his model railway, a large OO gauge layout built with intricate detail, although he didn’t operate it much over the past years but continued to amass a huge collection of several hundred locomotives, primarily LNER types, his great love bring the A4 class, of which he had around 60 examples, taking great delight in changing their identities to incorporate the original names and liveries.
I’m sure you’ll join with me in offering sincere condolences to his family.  Barrie.


It seems that the photo of the SD 40 Club members shown in our last issue is too long ago for readers to recognise any more of the people shown. It seems a pity that we were unable to share this photo at a time when we were in  contact with many more long serving employees.

However we’ve had more success with the above photo of employees who had served for 21 years in December 1973.

Front row L to R.:- Reg Bowles, Service Engineer, Basil Barber, Sales Manager, Percy? Blacksmith, Paul Hyde Toll Room Foreman.

Back row L to R. :- Eddie Carpenter, ?, Stan Quin  , Managing Director, Fred Halford, Works Convenor, ?
My thanks to Roger Morrisroe, Alan Brosnan and Phil Dent for these identifications.

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