A delightful book with excellent illustration, mainly in full colour. This book covers the history of the Bristol and Exeter Lines from their inception to their new life as the longest British heritage line – Highly Recommended.
NAME: Western Steam on Bristol and Exeter Lines FILE: R2701 AUTHOR: Peter Waller PUBLISHER: Unique Books BINDING: hard back PAGES: 96 PRICE: £19.99 GENRE: Non Fiction SUBJECT: Steam railways, heritage lines, Bristol & Exeter Lines, Bristol and Exeter Railway, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, Great Western Railway ISBN: 978-0-9957493-0-6 IMAGE: B2701.jpg BUYNOW: http://tinyurl.comy99aqvo6 LINKS: DESCRIPTION: A delightful book with excellent illustration, mainly in full colour. This book covers the history of the Bristol and Exeter Lines from their inception to their new life as the longest British heritage line – Highly Recommended. This is a must read for all steam enthusiasts, but it is also a lovely coverage of British countryside. From the beginnings of steam rail lines in Great Britain, there was an amazing and complex explosion of effort as a diverse collection of business interests sought to link every part of the British Isles by rail. There were competing rail companies, all busy laying their own unique lines, variation of technology and some worrying safety issues. By 1900, steam railways succeeded in linking every part of the British Isles and revolutionized society. Fresh produce was taken by rail from one end of Britain to the other. Local products found exciting new markets and people could travel greater distances, faster, in relative comfort and safety, at an affordable price. In the process the holiday industry was born. For the first time, workers could escape for a few days or weeks from the grime of their work day existence to the countryside and the coast. After WWII the nationalizing zeal of the second Labour Government succeeded in destroying enterprise and one consequence was to be the butchering of the rail network during the late 1950s and 1960s. Small under-used lines were closed to save money but this made the situation worse because it required the population in those areas to switch to lorries and cars. Once a road vehicle user, the driver had little desire just to drive to a surviving main line railway to continue by train. Costs continued to rise, service deteriorated and road networks expanded. The Bristol and Exeter Lines were fortunate that enthusiasts began to bring them back to life before bureaucrats managed to rip up rails and sell bits off without thought of any future needs. Today, the West Somerset Railway offers a unique length of track through some beautiful countryside with the operation of steam trains for tourist and enthusiast enjoyment.