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The Story of the Cyprus Government Railway
Mechanical Engineering Publications

The Story of the Cyprus Government Railway

Regular price £50.00 £0.00 Unit price per

This book tells for the first time the story of a little-known byway of railway and colonial history. It is a fascinating story at that, and one which was well worth preserving for posterity. Not the least remarkable aspect of it is the way in which it came to be written in the first place, and the author's modest but lucid account of how, starting from a second-hand report of an old locomotive preserved somewhere in Cyprus, he gradually uncovered the full story of the genesis, life and final decline and closure of the Cyprus Government Railway, as well as many of the physical remains, makes compelling reading. This is historical and engineering research at its best, and undertaken, be it remembered. not as a well endowed academic study, but as the spare-time interest of a serving soldier helping to keep the peace in a deeply divided community.

The Cyprus Government Railway has had to wait a long time for its chronicler, but in Lt. Col. Turner it has found a worthy one. An enthusiast, but one whose enthusiasm is tempered and given depth and direction by his engineering and military background, he is not content to recount just another railway history, but sets the story of the railway against the wider back- ground of the strategic and political importance of Cyprus. Beginning with a brief but comprehensive sketch of the history and strategic significance of the island, the book goes on to tell of the British take-over, the early demands and schemes for a railway, and its eventual planning and construction. We learn how it was operated, how it coped with the demands of two world wars, and how it finally succumbed to the competition of the motor vehicle. Full descriptions are given of its locomotives and rolling stock and, so far as they can be pieced together from the remaining evidence, of its fixed installations.

It goes without saying that this book will be welcomed by railway enthusiasts, particularly narrow-gauge devotees, but we venture to suggest that its appeal will be wider than that. The island of Cyprus is frequently in the news, and remains a matter of concern to Europe and the world. To all who would know and understand something of the island and its peoples, this history, told by one whose affection for both shines from every page, is essential reading.

Hardback, 19x25cm, 178 pages, black & white photographs

Condition: Good/Very Good

ISBN: 9780852984086

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Updated: 2 April 2024