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British Industrial History

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John Viret Gooch

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John Viret Gooch (1812-?) was the locomotive superintendent of the London and South Western Railway from 1841 to 1850. He was the brother of Sir Daniel Gooch, 1st Baronet (August 24, 1816–October 15, 1889) first chief mechanical engineer of the Great Western Railway from 1837 to 1864 and its Chairman from 1865 to 1889.

Born on 29th June 1812 at Bedlington, Northumberland he was a pupil of Joseph Locke during the construction of the Grand Junction Railway. He became resident engineer after that line opened. In 1840 he joined his older brother Thomas Longridge Gooch on the Manchester and Leeds Railway. Gooch was recommended to the LSWR by Locke and appointed locomotive superintendent on 1st January 1841. Officially Locke remained in charge of the department.

Initially locomotives were purchased from a wide range of private manufacturers such as Edward Bury and Company and Nasmyth, Gaskell and Company. From Jan 1843 the LSWR's own Nine Elms Works started production with the 'Eagle' class singles. Gooch's designs included a number of singles and the 'Bison' class 0-6-0 goods.

After leaving the LSWR in 1850, Gooch went to the Eastern Counties Railway. He was succeded on the LSWR by Joseph Hamilton Beattie.[1]


  1. Wikipedia