Brief History

Most Southern Railway Stations had Green & White enamel Target signs which were generally mounted on the Station's lampposts as shown in the pictures above With SR O2 No 216 in Calstock Station in 1947.

The unflanged signs were mounted on a wooden backing board down the centre of the sign, which was then attached to the post or in some cases to the station buildings.

 Over the period of their use targets were produced with a variety of different sizes and layouts. Words such as 'Halt' were put on the green round section under the name.

 With nationalisation of the Railways in 1948 a corporate image Totem sign was introduced  and in most  targets were replaced in the early 1950's.

 However some stations retained them even when totems had been introduced, either as a mixture of both or sometimes just by keeping the targets. An example of this was DORKING NORTH which only had targets right up until it received "Modern Image" signs.

Shown below are examples of various shapes and sizes that were used, the size depending on the length of the Station name.


Because these signs were only used on the Southern Region they are not as collectable as BR Totems and for this reason it is possible to build up an interesting collection at a more affordable price. Pictured below are some difficult to obtain Targets from the Surrey Suburban line to Epsom Downs where steam once hauled the Queen to to watch the Derby.


Below E1R 32610 on a passenger train at Torrington station in 1949

We have made a list of all the Stations that appear to have had Targets and and have produced an approximate price guide as to how much you might have to pay to purchase any particular target.

  The price of any Target depends on many factors.

1)  How many Targets were on any particular Station - A small Station may have had only 4 or 6 and a large Station could have had 30 plus.
2)  Whether the Station was cleared by contractors which in many cases resulted in them all being disposed of into landfill.
3)  If the Targets found their way to Collectors Corner shops in London and York or were sold off by BR through their auctions of Station furniture. These should all survive and form the majority of the ones that go through Collectors Auctions at the current time.
4)  On smaller Stations the signage was taken down by the Station staff and was often sold to customers who wanted a sign from their local Station. The remainder would either then go to the Collectors Corner Shops or to Landfill depending on the date the Station was resigned.
5) Another factor is whether the Station has been closed or remains open as closed Stations command a premium.
6) Holiday destinations and remote Country locations will always be more expensive than those from urban situations apart from major City terminus Stations particularly London.
7) Our rarity lists uses the number of times a Target has been in auction as a guide to how likely you would be to find one to purchase and how much it might cost. Our prices given are for a Target in good condition with just the usual rusting around the edges and the screw holes and most likely a couple of small face chips.

Because the majority of Targets for sale are in Specialist Railwayana Auctions you only need two determined bidders to push the price of a fairly common one to record levels. You must also bear in mind that the number of times a Target has been in auction includes one or two Targets from that Station that may have been bought and sold a number of times.

The list below takes you to our guides which have a page for each letter of the Alphabet - click on the letter you wish to investigate and then you can go around the alphabet from that page . Good Hunting!

A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z

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