The roots of Rail Books can be traced back to the mid-1970s when the late Geoff Gamble, a founding member of the Three Millimetre Society, began selling books to raise funds for the Society. Retirement saw Geoff Gamble Books continue independently from the Society and this continued until Geoff’s untimely death in 2000. In the 1990s Geoff also published a series of books under the Cheona imprint.
Bruce Smetham often helped Geoff out with the business so it was only natural that the business passed to him. He restarted trading in early 2001, initially following the same pattern of trading at model railway exhibitions mainly in the Home Counties. In more recent times, Bruce successfully developed both mail order sales and, more recently, an internet presence trading variously as Geoff Gamble Books, railwaybooks.org and more recently, Rail-Books.co.uk
I first got to know Bruce in 1971 through our common interests in both the contemporary railway scene and in railway modelling. This served to cement a 45 year friendship. In the same way that Bruce started his interest in the business by helping the then proprietor, I too began by assisting Bruce at the busier model railway exhibitions. With Bruce’s failing health dictating that he could no longer give the business the attention that it deserved, he transferred his interests over to me in July 2016. Sadly, a few days after the transfer took place, Bruce passed away.
While the business is being refocused to concentrate more on mail order and internet based sales, Rail-Books still attends several model railway exhibitions each year. Details of those exhibitions are shown on the "Forthcoming Shows" page.
Keith Jarrett (Proprietor)