Indian Railway parcel offices bid adieu to British-era weighing scales

The scales, which were made more than a century ago by Liverpool-based Henry Pooley & Son Limited were put in use by Indian Railway’s parcel offices.
A British-era weighing scale with the royal emblem.
A British-era weighing scale with the royal emblem. (Express/MK Ashok Kumar)

TIRUCHY: Several passengers at Tiruchy railway junction on Wednesday travelled back in time as they were greeted by the presence of several British-era weighing scales, bearing the Royal emblem, lined up at the parcel office. The scales, which were made more than a century ago by Liverpool-based Henry Pooley & Son Limited and put in use by Indian Railway’s parcel offices, were among the many that were waiting to be sent to stock houses at different locations.

Gopinathan K, who travels frequently by train, was among those who spotted the weighing scales.

“When I went through the door next to the parcel office to enter the station on Wednesday, I spotted the weighing scales. Their shape and antique appearance drew my attention. I examined them closely to notice the Royal emblem of Lion and Unicorn on it. The workers placing the scales in front of the parcel office said that they arrived from various railway stations. We would like to see some of these scales sent to railway museums,” he said.

While sources said the Indian Railway has hundreds of such scales spread across its many divisions, senior railway officials told TNIE that the scales assembled in front of the Tiruchy parcel office would be moved to the railway’s stock house in Tiruchy.

British-era weighing scales kept in front of the parcel office at Tiruchy Railway Junction on Thursday.
British-era weighing scales kept in front of the parcel office at Tiruchy Railway Junction on Thursday. (Express/MK Ashok Kumar)

“All the parcel offices now have digital weighing scales, so we no longer use these (British-era scales). As a result, the Indian Railway started removing the antique weighing scales from different stations. Some of these scales have been lodged at various railway museums across the country. The museum in Tiruchy also has the antique weighing scales in display,” a senior railway official said.

On the move to send the British-era weighing scales to stock houses, Ravikumar GS, another frequent rail user, said, “I believe the railway made the right decision to have the outdated scales moved to its stock houses. Considering their importance, it is commendable that they preserved some of them in the museums. Another option is to exhibit the scales in glass cases at the railway station.”

Related Stories

No stories found.

X
The New Indian Express
www.newindianexpress.com