The Southern Railway, 1923-1947: Steam on the Portsmouth Direct Line
This highly illustrated book describes the life of the Portsmouth Direct Line from the time it became part of the Southern Railway in 1923 until nationalization on 1 January 1948. Following a brief introduction to the line's early history from the Railway Mania days of the 1840s, to the end of the London & South Western Railway in December 1922, the author provides a wealth of pictorial material showing the line during its heyday, when it served thousands of passengers daily during the summer holiday months, and also catered for those travelling to the Isle of Wight. Detailed descriptions of the locomotives used, the make-up of passenger and freight trains, and individual performances, are enlivened by anecdotes describing unusual events. Reminiscences by many older railwaymen are included, with an especially interesting first-hand account from boilersmith Bill Bishop. The book also explains a number of mysteries, such as the lack of water troughs, and why the 'Lord Nelson' class sometimes appeared on the line. A superb collection of photographs, showing locomotives, trains and stations, as well as station buildings, enhances this comprehensive history of the line, with a particularly strong showing of the active scene at Guildford, with its big engine roundhouse, running shed, turntable, extensive goods yard and six busy platforms. It will not only have a regional historical interest but, with its detailed account of an important line during a fascinating period, will also appeal to railway enthusiasts throughout the country, while a complete set of track layouts gives the book added appeal for railway modellers.
Hardback with dust jacket, unpaginated pages, black & white photographs
Condition: Good/Very Good
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Updated: 29 December 2023