One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A person employed in laying and maintaining railway track.
- ‘The family consisted of Henry Webster, a railway platelayer then a stone quarryman labourer, born at Bakewell on April 14, 1850, and his wife Sarah, nee Smith, born at Rothwell in 1860.’
- ‘Many jobs were no more nor less dangerous than thousands of posts in other walks of life, but for shunters, goods guards and brakesmen, permanent way staff and platelayers the story was different.’
- ‘Perhaps the only trades which are exclusive to railways in their nomenclature are platelayers, shunters and signalmen.’
- ‘These are of course available only at decennial intervals, and the Statistical Office translated ‘railway employment’ to mean those jobs which could not be done other than on the railway - signalman, guard, platelayer, shunter, etc.’
- ‘A Garsdale platelayer who begged some coal for the line-side hut was granted his request in an unexpected manner.’
- ‘But when each village station had a staff of up to a dozen, all told, plus the local lengthmen, platelayers and the like, the railway must have featured large in the village economy on a national scale.’
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