Taylor, Taylor & Hobson made quite a few RR types before the Cooke triplet started to dominate their business. It is assumed that a new series of serial numbers were introduced when this revolution started.
VM is also very vague about early serial numbers.
To-day, the following engraved ordinary TT&H RR was sold - you know where.
It was engraved:

TAYLOR TAYLOR & HOBSON Leicester & London

Eq. FOCUS 9.27IN. 8 X 5 R R MAY 1895

NO 8448

Is this a message to all of us from a foresighted member of staff? The engraving is exactly as usual - apart from the date May 1895.
Is this an engraver who was having a birthday or a special order for a customer?
It certainly helps to place quite a lot of TT&H RRs a bit more accurately. A very small contribution - but quite fun, I think!