Narrow Gauge Album: 1965-1985 In Colour
Narrow gauge railways in the British Isles following the Second World War were either on their last legs, had already closed or were about to. The passenger narrow gauge lines in Ireland had all gone by the 1960s and those in Scotland had perished long before. Preservation, in the form of voluntary run railways, was in its infancy. The Talyllyn was the first, followed closely by the Festiniog Railway, although the majority of the survivors were still commercially run, the Snowdon Mountain, Vale of Rheidol and Isle of Man being examples.
This book covers the changing years of the narrow gauge. In Wales, a metamorphosis was underway. Narrow gauge lines were being exhumed or improved to carry an increasing number of tourists. In England, there remained a few industrial concerns, such as the sand line in Leighton Buzzard, which either bequeathed their steam locomotives or provided access to preservationists. In order for these narrow gauge lines to survive at all and then move forward to enter the tourist industry and be accepted as economic generators, they had to change, sometimes rapidly and often without much thought to past heritage; that would come later.
We chart their progress, in glorious colour pictures, as the railways hastened to get themselves fit enough to carry larger numbers of passengers than had perhaps ever been dreamed of. We take the narrow gauge story in Britain, largely from the 1960s up towards the 1990s. This thirty year period saw the development of the surviving narrow gauge lines in Wales, the establishment of some new tourist lines in England and the preservation of many narrow gauge locomotives by individuals, clubs and museums. The images and their accompanying stories show how the lines which feature survived, adapted and developed in this period.
You will read about the success of dreams once thought impossible and see locomotives of many types, sizes, shapes and colour: double engines, single engines, vertical boilered locomotives, sentinels, Swiss rack locomotives, Simplex diesels and the last British Railways steam locomotives in blue, sporting the controversial white double arrow logo.
‘It was a feeling of adventure. It was a challenge. All of us were looking for some kind of challenge because, for years and years and years, we’d been channelled into doing things, particularly those of us who were in the services, rather than being in a situation of accepting a challenge on our own initiative. I think the motivation for all of us was the sense of adventure and of actually being able to do something with a railway of our own.’ [Pat Whitehouse]
Hardback, 224 pages, colour photographs
Most orders are dispatched within two working days of receipt of cleared payment. If there is going to be a significant delay, we will endeavour to contact you and give you an estimated dispatch time.
Please be aware that advance orders will be sent as soon as the relevant book has been published.
When placing your order, please ensure that you add the correct full shipping address to your order. This includes house number, street name, zip code/post code. If parcels are returned on account of an incorrect shipping address we will contact you to seek the correct address and also ask that you pay a contribution towards posting the parcel to you a second time.
All orders over £20.00 are post free to all UK addresses. For orders of £20 or less, a £1.50 postage fee will be added. These are normally sent via Royal Mail 48 Hour (the business equivalent of 2nd class mail) which is not tracked. If you require tracking for your, tracking options are available for a small fee. If the service that you require is not shown, please get in touch with us and we can quote for your desired service.
Large, bulky or high value orders may be split in to multiple consignments or sent via courier. There is no additional charge for this and you will be advised at the order fulfillment stage if this happens.
Overseas orders are charged based on weight, and postage will be automatically calculated at checkout. For a postage quotation, please add the items you want to your cart and proceed to the checkout. All orders are usually sent via Air Mail - this is not tracked. If you required your order to be tracked or sent by a different service, please contact us, preferably before checkout.
Royal Mail will only accept parcels up to 5kg in weight (2kg for Canada). If you are ordering multiple items that exceed these limits, please contact us first so that we can advise you of the appropriate shipping rate.
Due to the high volume of parcels going missing, we are no longer able to send untracked orders via third party mail handling services such as Parcel Motel. We are able to send untracked parcels to bona fide PO Box addresses, friends and family members and to work addresses.
Some countries charge import taxes and we suggest that in these cases, you asked for your order to be tracked so the local taxation authorities can trace your parcel.
Updated: 1 April 2020