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Books Gi - Great

by Jeff Hurst
The author first 'discovered' the Glencorse branch in the summer of 1963, while exploring the district by means of a recently acquired bicycle and the local Ordnance Survey map.  The Glencorse line was one of several branches which ran south-west from the northern end of the North British Railway's 'Waverley Route'.  It remains unique in that it was the last to be completed, the first to lose its passenger service and has outlasted all of them in continuous use, including the Waverley Route itself, by a considerable margin.  Indeed, at the time of writing, the rails are still in place, eight years after the passage of the last train. Although the branch was just over eight miles long, it has never featured prominently in the railway press, it has a story worth telling, and the author covers its history, together with details of the various industries it served. 
The book is to A5 format with 176 pages, with more than 160 photographs, maps and plans.  It is printed on art paper throughout and has a glossy laminated 2-colour cover with a square-backed spine.

ISBN 0 85361 539 X
ISBN 978 0 85361 539 2

£ 10.95

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The Story of Queen Victoria's Funeral Train
by Peter J. Keat
'All day long the Angel of Death has been hovering over Osbourne House. One could almost hear the beating of the wings, but at a quarter past six those wings were folded and the Queen was at rest'. These words were written by the Special Court correspondent of The Times on 22nd January, 1901, the day Queen Victoria died. Naturally all British newspapers carried this as their main story on the whole of its front page with pictures of the late Queen and new King Edward over the legend 'The Queen is dead. long live the King'. It went on to describe the nation's grief and sorrow, the massive wave of sympathy which was sweeping the country, the tributes from not only all over Europe but from countries and nations worldwide and here, at home in Britain, the hasty recall of both the Houses of Parliament to the Palace of Westminster.

Straightaway plans began to be laid for one of the most unusual and remarkable railway journeys in history.

Three different locomotives from three different railway companies hauled the train carrying the body of the late Queen from the Royal Clarence Yard in Gosport to London Victoria, and then from Paddington to Windsor. Because of the number of crowned heads and other Royal and important personages on the train along with all the security implications, the authorities decided that no photographers would be allowed access to any part of the route. The whole length of all of the lines the Royal Train traversed was patrolled by specially delegated railway employees, the result of this was that any photographs of the Royal Funeral Train are extremely rare.

The book is to A5 format and consists of 96 pages including 90 photographs and illustrations etc. It has full laminated colour card cover with a square-backed spine.


ISBN 0 85361 569 1
ISBN 978 0 85361 569 9

£ 8.95

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by Michael Harris
Pre-Grouping carriages? They must be out of the ark - not so - you might well have seen them, once you appreciate that the last of these veterans departed from BR service during the late 1960s. The two principal East Coast royal saloons lasted even longer, into the 1970s. But there was nothing to compare with the original condition of the GNR and ECJS carriages, in their splendid varnished teak panels and elaborate lining-out and coats-of-arms. What splendid models they would make! The attempt has been made to include details of carriage workings and to identify from photographs a number of the carriages marshalled in trains during their heyday or later. Equally, there are many photographs reproduced of the carriages in their last days. 160 pages of text including 52 plans, plus 64 pages of art paper with 138 photographs making a total of 224 pages. A5 format, square-backed Linson cover.

ISBN 0 85361 477 6
ISBN 978 0 85361 477 7

£ 11.90

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Edward M. Patterson                                                           
The Great Northern Railway of Ireland, maintained an independent existence for 77 years, much of that time prosperously established as the second largest and certainly the most enterprising of the Irish railway systems. Springing from the need to link Dublin and Belfast by rail, the Great Northern was the result of amalgamation of numerous smaller companies.

The system began in the mid-1830s. Ireland's population had by then risen to more than eight million, and it was increasing. Dublin was the capital and the only considerable city, but Belfast had embarked on industrialisation and was growing at a phenomenal rate. Between the two places the best means of communication was by coach, a 100 mile journey over rough roads. It took longer indeed to travel between Dublin and Belfast than it did to cross from either in a small vessel to the port of Liverpool.
Perhaps because no gathering of company promoters could be assembled who would agree on such a far-sighted railway policy, the Dublin-Belfast link had to be forged piecemeal. Rail access to Londonderry was similarly done in stages. Between these routes, the Ulster Railway had reached Clones, which was already on the course of the Dundalk & Enniskillen Railway. Secondary and branch lines were supplementing these main routes. Amalgamation of the four main line companies of the area took place in 1875-6.

The disaster of the Potato Famine initiated wholesale emigration from Ireland, and in the course of a century the population shrank by half. So it was that the Great Northern, was presented with the difficulty of paying its way. In spite of this the Great Northern was at its most prosperous in the 30 years or so preceding World War I. The political and technical changes which followed that conflict produced a rapid change in fortunes: the political division of Ireland, civil war, tariff restrictions, and above all the development of road transport, all  reacted against the Great Northern. Falling receipts and soaring operating costs
brought the company to its knees shortly after the end of World War II. Five years of shared nationalisation followed, during which much of the system suffered closures. In 1958 what was left was divided and administered thereafter by the  Ulster Transport Authority and by Coras Iompair Eireann.

First published in 1962, in this new edition of The Great Northern Railway (Ireland) Dr Patterson's text remains largely unaltered, except where more recent research has revealed new data. The book is now illustrated throughout with 190 photographs and maps. Appendix One (List of Stations and Halts) has been significantly revised and updated. No attempt has been made to include a history of the former GNR(I) lines under UTA/NIR/CIE/IE auspices.

A5 format, 240 pages, 190 illustrations. It is printed on art paper throughout, with a full colour laminated card cover with a square-backed spine.

ISBN 0 85361 602 7
ISBN 978 0 85361 602 3

£ 14.95

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by Stanley C Jenkins                       


Pre-History and Origins of the
    Line (1846-1901)
Construction and Opening
The First Forty Years (1906-
The British Railways Era
The Route from London to
The Route from Ruislip to
    Princes Risborough
The Route from Princes
    Risborough to Banbury
The Branch Lines
Principal Locomotive Classes
    used on the GW&GC Joint
    Line 1906-1988
Sources and Further Reading

The Great Western & Great Central Joint Railway, together with its northwards extension through Bicester, was the very last main line railway to be opened in these islands. For this reason alone, it should be of interest to the enthusiast, yet, on reflection, it is clear that railway historians have ignored the 'New Line' to Birmingham. Bicester was also the last place in the country to be served by slip coach services.

The present monograph was first published in 1978 and it was felt that the time had come for an enlarged edition. There have been many changes since then, the GW&GC route having been extensively modernised by the state-owned British Rail, and then handed over to private companies as a result of the policy of ‘privatisation’ that was then being pursued by the Conservative Government.

The story of the GW&GC Joint Line is slanted towards the earlier periods though - evidence relating to the planning and construction of the line having survived in profusion. Some of this material has been included in the revised text while, to provide a counter-balance, the 'route' section has been much-expanded, with many further details of the infrastructure at individual stations. Most of this new data has been obtained from plans and documents that are now in private collections.

In fact, as far as some locations were concerned, there was an over-abundance of new material - so much so, that the 'route' section has expanded to three lengthy chapters.

In the past 50 years railway historians have tended to concentrate on branch lines. The complex infrastructure of the great main lines has been largely ignored, and stations such as Denham, High Wycombe and Bicester North have not received the attention that they deserve. It is hoped that this new edition of The Great Western & Great Central Joint Railway will help to rectify this deficiency.

This much enlarged new edition is to A5 format, and consists of 256 pages with more than 190 illustrations.


ISBN 0 85361 653 1
ISBN 978 0 85361 653 5

£ 15.95

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by C.W. Judge
A glorious celebration of a lost era. There are photographs of just over 100 different stations, all with informative extended captions.
This book does not set out to be a history or even cover all of the GWR system, but instead it is intended to capture the scenes of days long gone. All the views are taken before the 1948 Nationalisation and therefore are ‘truly Great Western’.
The photographs are laid out in approximate geographic sequence starting from London, heading west towards the West Country, then returning towards Wales, the border country and the West Midlands.
It is hoped that the photographs in this book bring back fond memories of holidays taken by rail or, for the younger reader, help them understand the network of rural branch lines that the GWR established in the heyday of rail travel. Perhaps also the photographs will help the GWR modeller with some small detail to make their model more authentic and prove a valuable addition to your railway library.
A5 format with glossy full colour cover with a square-backed spine, 80 pages with 136 photographs.

ISBN 0 85361 496 2
ISBN 978 0 85361 496 8

£ 6.95

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