John Viret Gooch

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John Viret Gooch (29 June 1812 – 8 June 1900) was the locomotive superintendent of the London and South Western Railway from 1841 to 1850. Born at Bedlington, Northumberland, John Viret Gooch (brother of Daniel Gooch) was the son of John and Anna (born Longridge).[1]


Grand Junction Railway[edit]

He became the pupil of Joseph Locke during the construction of the Grand Junction Railway and he became the resident engineer after that line opened.

Manchester and Leeds Railway[edit]

In 1840 he joined his older brother Thomas Longridge Gooch on the Manchester and Leeds Railway.

London and South Western Railway[edit]

Gooch was recommended to the LSWR by Locke and appointed locomotive superintendent on 1 January 1841. Officially Locke remained in charge of the department.

LSWR locomotives

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 Locomotive Works started production with the 'Eagle' class singles. Gooch's designs included a number of singles and the 'Bison' class 0-6-0 goods.

Eastern Counties Railway[edit]

After leaving the LSWR in 1850, Gooch went to the Eastern Counties Railway where he stayed until 1856.[2] At this point, he would only have been aged 44, but there is currently no information on his later career. There is a reference to "Inappropriate financial transactions at the Eastern Counties Railway"[3] but it is not known whether this is relevant.


J. V. Gooch was married twice. First, in June 1840, to Hannah Frances Handcock, daughter of Captain Elias Robinson Handcock. Secondly, on 16 March 1876, to Emily Mary Stonhouse, daughter of Reverend Charles Stonhouse. J. V. Gooch lived at Cooper's Hill, Bracknell, Berkshire.[4]


  1. ^, accessed December 2010
  2. ^ "Sir Daniel Gooch". Retrieved 2012-06-10. 
  3. ^ "Backtrack Volume 9". Retrieved 2012-06-10. 
  4. ^
Business positions
Preceded by
J. Woods
Locomotive Superintendent of the London and South Western Railway
Succeeded by
Joseph Hamilton Beattie
Preceded by
John Hunter
Locomotive Superintendent of the Eastern Counties Railway
Succeeded by
Robert Sinclair