From Steam to Stone, volume 1
This volume is the first of two that together describe a career with British Railways from 1951 to 1968. It is a memoir of recollections that divide naturally into three phases covering, respectively, the footplate, office, and management years. It describes a career that was considered most unusual related to the times in which it occurred. Never, in the few fanciful dreams occasionally indulged in as it progressed, was it ever remotely imagined it would ultimately take the course that occurred.
Early years were spent at ex-Great Eastern sheds at Southend and Cambridge. Redundant, the author was moved to Kings Cross where he experienced the antipathy so often directed against ‘foreigners’ since the Grouping in 1923 when there was an influx of ex-GCR men on promotion. Booked with a certain difficult ex-GN driver, David triumphantly overcame this virulent ill-feeling in the only way open to him, a sign of things to come.
By 1958, when the diesels had arrived, David felt the job would lose the challenge of steam work that he treasured: so he decided to leave the footplate and, having had a good general education, had no difficulty in passing the clerical examination to seek fresh challenges in an era of rapid change. . . the full story continues in Volume Two.
Softback, 240 pages with 130 illustrations
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