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Books Q - Railways

QUARRY HUNSLETS OF NORTH WALES - The Great (Little) Survivors    
by Cliff Thomas

The 0-4-0 saddle tanks produced by the Hunslet Engine Co. of Leeds, forever associated with the quarries of North Wales, have proven to be remarkable survivors. Much loved and admired, almost all entered preservation and examples work on heritage railways the length and breadth of the country. For the first time, these locomotives have been brought together in a single volume, regardless of the quarry where they spent their working lives.
The history of each locomotive is detailed, along with a description of the groups into which they fall. The reader will discover that these locomotives may appear similar, but are far from identical. The criteria for inclusion has been drawn as being narrow gauge, built as an 0-4-0ST by Hunslet and worked for a North Wales quarry. This includes locomotives built for the granite industry as well as slate. The definition has also allowed the inclusion of Pe
nrhyn 'main line' locomotives.

Notes are included to give a flavour of the past, based on interviews with ex-quarry loco drivers, along with extracts from maintenance logs. The narrative brings the story right up to date - even the project to re-create one of the very few of these locomotives not to survive intact is detailed. Some myths, legends and mysteries surrounding some of the locomotives are explored to provide as comprehensive a record as possible.

The lavish collection of archive photographs, including rare images from the Gwynedd Archive service and the work of the late Ivo Peters, is supplemented by comprehensive pictorial coverage in preservation by the author. Modellers will delight in the section which describes and illustrates the component parts of these locomotives, along with photographs of semi-dismantled examples undergoing overhaul.
The work of the author is widely known - initially with Railway World and, since early 2001, his narrow gauge news column in The Railway Magazine. He has also written on the current narrow gauge scene for Narrow Gauge World since issue No. 1,
and contributes material to Heritage Railway and Old Glory, amongst others. His previous book for the Oakwood Press, The Whipsnade and Umfolozi Railway and The Great Whipsnade Railway, received critical acclaim.

The book consists of 256 pages of art paper which include almost 200 photographs and six locomotive plans, it is casebound with a gold-blocked spine, a full colour dust jacket.


ISBN 0 85361 575 6
ISBN 978 0 85361 575 0

Hardback £22.95

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by B. L. Jackson
This work complements the Isle of Portland Railways (a three volume history published by the Oakwood Press), which are the fruit of author Brian Jackson's 30 plus years of research into the transport history of the Island, its connections with Weymouth, and the surrounding area.
A varied selection of photographs (none of which appeared in the Isle of Portland Railways trilogy) supported by detailed captions depict all aspects, including a selection showing pre-war trains at Easton and the last few years leading up to the closure of the branch to regular passenger traffic in March 1952. The subsequent use of the branch for goods traffic and the various special trains, including early rail tours and the Royal train are covered, as are the final special passenger trains and the complete closure of the branch in 1965 and its later removal.

For the benefit of readers who are not familiar with the full history, mini-chapters guide you through the important events to give an insight into the early history. The story of bus services up to 1969 was covered in Isle of Portland Railway Vol 3.

In Rail and Road Transport on the Isle of Portland we cover the drastic changes that have taken place within the bus industry since then, with a fully illustrated chapter bringing the story up to date through the tempestuous years since de-regulation and the bus war between the established operator, Southern National, Smiths of Portland, and new comer 'Weybus', making it compelling reading for those interested in the modern transport scene.

They book is to A5 format and consists of 160 pages and includes 270 photographs. It is printed on art paper throughout with a full colour laminated card cover.


ISBN 0 85361 581 0
ISBN 978 0 85361 581 1

£ 11.95

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RAILS TO ACHILL - A West of Ireland Branch Line
by Jonathan Beaumont

If you travel from Westport in the west of Ireland through Newport and Mulrany to Achill Sound today, here and there you will see overgrown sections of railway embankment, bridges and a couple of tunnels, as well as the magnificent stone viaduct across the river in Newport. These are the surviving remnants of the old Achill line - a branch line built at the close of the 19th century to help develop the area and link it with the outside world.

The promoters of the line had high hopes for its future, and the railway was opened to the public in several sections in 1894/5. It proved to be a great social and economic asset to this area of County Mayo, but traffic never consistently reached the levels originally anticipated, and as a result the line was not profitable for much of the year. Development of road traffic in the 1930s sealed the fate of the rails to Achill, and the last train ran in the autumn of 1937 - a mere 42 years after the line had opened.

Since then, trains have operated from Dublin just as far as Westport, which is now the railhead for the area. The track onwards to Achill was dismantled in 1938. Today, the remaining stone and earthworks, along with the old railway station buildings at Newport, Mulrany and Achill Sound stand in mute testimony to the line; the local businessmen who promoted it, the builders, and the people who used it. The course of the line is still very identifiable for most of its length, despite over 60 years having elapsed since the last train ran. Here and there, parts of it have a new use now. The viaduct in Newport is a beautifully restored prominent local landmark with a path along the top, giving the visitor a glimpse of the spectacular views that were possible from the train. Newport goods shed is now a small chapel, while Achill station has become a guesthouse.

This is the story of the ‘Achill Railway’ - described by travellers at the turn of the 20th century as ‘one of the most scenic railway journeys in these Islands’.

The book is to A5 format and consists of 160 pages with 130 photographs, plans and illustrations, printed on art paper throughout, it has a card cover with a square-backed spine.


ISBN 0 85361 588 8
ISBN 978 0 85361 588 0

£ 10.95/Euro 18.00

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RAILS TO NEWQUAY - Railways, Tramways, Town, Transport
by John Vaughan
Newquay reflects the influence man has had in the development of a small coastal hamlet of the Georgian era into a substantial holiday resort of the 21st century.

In terms of local industries and employment there have been radical changes during the past 150 years. In centuries past the primary occupations were from the sea especially in terms of pilchard and herring fishing, and from the land, including agriculture and farming, and various mining activities, significantly china clay. From 1849, when a tramway to Newquay was built, the commercial activity at the harbour hugely increased. A number of cottage industries grew rapidly from the turn of the 20th century, particularly clothing and knitwear but by far and away the greatest influence was the development of tourism.

This development was greatly facilitated by the availability of public transport, especially the coming of the railway to Newquay in 1876. In the Edwardian era direct trains from London operated, thousands of holidaymakers would arrive in Newquay by train. The service between Newquay and Par gradually increased in frequency and in 1905 another railway line from Truro via Chacewater, St Agnes and Perranporth to Newquay opened.

Between the two World Wars growth was significant and the holiday trade boomed. By this time buses and coaches were providing an alternative means of transport but it was the family car in the post-depression years of the 1930s which was to have the greatest impact. In the post-World War II era the holiday trade quickly became re-established and Newquay was proving to be as popular as ever. The 1960s and 1970s were decades of transition.

Gradually travel patterns have changed and now the car is king. The use of aircraft has hugely increased and some 400,000 passengers used Newquay Airport in 2007. The numbers arriving by train has significantly decreased but the Newquay branch line retains the distinction of being the only Cornish branch to enjoy through trains from distant locations on time-dated Summer weekend.

The book is to A5 format, it consists of 288 pages with 300 illustrations and is printed on high quality art paper throughout. It has a glossy laminated colour card cover , is perfect-bound with a square-backed spine.

See Book Review


ISBN 978 0 85361 677 1

£ 16.95

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by Colin Stone

This much enlarged new edition brings the story up to date. It tells of the various railways which served Poole Harbour. From the coming of the main line to Poole and changes to the main line network through the years, to the story of the many minor railways in the area.


Amongst the lines covered are the Hamworthy branch and the industrial lines of Hamworthy, the Poole Quay Tramway and the numerous industrial and private railways in the area. Included are the South Western Pottery Railway which connected Parkstone station to Salterns Pier, the railways of the Royal Navy Cordite Factory at Holton Heath, and the well-known clay lines to Arne and Goathorn Pier to name a few.

The odd-one-out, as it never had a physical connection with Poole Harbour, is the fascinating Bourne Valley Railway which was situated near Branksome station.

A5 format, 208 pages with more than 276 photographs/plans etc., it has a glossy laminated colour card cover with a square-backed spine.

Much enlarged, revised and updated edition with
more than 100 extra illustrations

Main Line Routes
The Hamworthy Branch, 1847 to 1967
The Hamworthy Branch since 1967
Motive Power on the Hamworthy Branch
Poole Quay Tramway
They Also Served
The Present Day
Poole Park Miniature Railway
Private Sidings in Poole
Poole Freight Working in 1960


ISBN 978 0 85361 662 7

£ 14.95

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RAILS TO TURNBERRY AND THE HEADS OF AYR.  The Maidens & Dunure Light Railway and the Butlin’s Branch
by David McConnell & Stuart Rankin

At one time a scenic coastal railway route linked Girvan with Ayr. The line was built to serve the villages of Maidens, Dunure and Alloway; it was hoped it would help develop agriculture and fishing. However, the route is best remembered for the role it played in leisure and holiday traffic. The Glasgow & South-Western Railway designed and developed the world famous golf course and hotel at Turnberry. Post-World War II a Butlin’s Holiday Camp was built at Heads of Ayr bringing many holidaymakers to the northern section of the route. Here is the story of what was a vastly under-publicised railway and its associations with Turnberry Hotel and golf courses, amid the historic, historical and present-day environment of both Carrick and Ayrshire. Captured here is the invigorating and romantic spirit of this scenic line and its fascinating and varied trains, services and all-embracing history that are astounding in relation to a small rural branch with no intermediate towns.
The story of the Carrick coast railway, through the country of Robert the Bruce, the Clan Kennedy and Robert Burns, has now been told.

304 pages    186 illustrations


Historic Ayrshire and Carrick, and their Railways
Rails for Alloway, 1896-1897
Rails for the Carrick Coast, 1897

The Carrick Coast Railway Meetings, 1898
The Meeting with the Light Railway Commissioners, 1898
Rails and Golf for the Carrick Coast, 1899-1901
Developing Turnberry and Building the Railway, 1902-1906
The Ceremonial Opening of the Railway and Turnberry Hotel, 1906
Early Period Train Services, 1906-1913
Mid-Period Train Services, 1914-1922
Late Period Train Services, 1923-1930

Closures, Retentions and New Services, 1930-1942
The Locomotives of the Turnberry Road
The Signalling of the Turnberry Road
The Butlin’s Opening and the Turnberry Revival, 1947-1951
The Final Era of the Goods Services, 1946-1959
The Butlin’s Passenger Services and their Locomotives, 1947-1968
Towards the Branch Closure, 1966-1968
The End of the Line, 1968
Memories of the Line, 1930s-1950s
The Remains of the Line

ISBN 978 0 85361 699 3

£ 19.95

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by Peter F. Marshall
The history of the railways of Dundee has not been fully told before. Companies were formed to create lines from the harbour at Dundee to Newtyle, Arbroath and Perth, as well as through Fife from Edinburgh to the ferry on the southern shore of the River Tay and of course the story of the Tay Bridge is told. From early years to the present as the branches were closed one by one. A5 format, 192 pages of art paper, 129 photos/plans, hardback with a gold-blocked spine, with a glossy jacket.

‘if you are at all interested in either Scottish railways or the history of Dundee, then this book will make an excellent
addition to any book collection. Highly recommended.’
Historical Model Railway Society


ISBN 0 85361 482 2
ISBN 978 0 85361 482 1

£ 15.50

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