Track Topics is the sixth title in the popular series of facsimile reprints of famous books for railway enthusiasts, formerly published by the Great Western Railway in their "Boys of All Ages" series. Originally published in 1935, this fascinating book, when dealing with the historical and the then topical aspects of GWR civil engineering, describes the building of the original main line and its chief engineering features, as well as the continued and extensive improvements which subsequently took place, plus the more mundane aspects of day-to-day maintenance. There is a chapter on Brunel, and major engineering features such as Box Tunnel, the Royal Albert Bridge and the Severn Tunnel have one or more chapters to themselves. Events in the history of the construction of the GWR, such as broad versus narrow gauge, the failure of the atmospheric railway in South Devon and the enormous problem with the Great Spring in the Severn Tunnel make dramatic reading. The 163 illustrations form a prominent part of the book, and as well as photographs there are reproductions of some of I. C. Bourne's well-known prints.
W. G. Chapman, the author of the series, wrote in an easy style, readily understood by the younger reader, yet capable of being appreciated by experts, more knowledgeable and mature in years. The GWR, with' its flair for publicity, never found it difficult to reach an appreciative audience. The same is still true today.
Although the books in this attractive series were published in their thousands in the 1920s and 1930s, original examples are not easy to find today. These facsimile reprints will be eagerly sought by many railway enthusiasts as nostalgic reminders of days now past.
Hardback with dust jacket, 260 pages, black & white photographs
Condition: Very Good +
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Updated: 29 December 2023