Black Country Steam: Western Region Operations 1948-67 (Pen & Sword)

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By Paul Dorney. The railway lines of the heavily industrialised Black Country were of considerable commercial importance to the Great Western Railway and its successor, the Western Region of British Railways. Despite this importance, little has previously been published concerning the railway landscape of industrial North-West Worcestershire and South-East Staffordshire.

Black Country Steam: Western Region Operations 1948–1967 seeks to redress that previous lack of attention, by presenting a significant selection of over 200 hitherto unpublished photographs, principally taken by locally-based enthusiasts. The images, which cover the period from nationalisation to the ultimate demise of steam, are all accompanied by informative captions. They depict a wide variety of steam locomotives and the diverse traffic generated by the local industry, via the sidings and yards that served it.

The book follows each of the former Great Western routes through the region in a logical manner and contains informative introductions to each line. All 30 stations within the area are featured and coverage is also given to local locomotive running sheds and maintenance facilities.

Most of the featured lines have now closed, as has much of the heavy industry in the area. In many respects the landscape today is unrecognisable from that of the days of steam, but it is hoped this book will prove a significant historical record and will rekindle memories of a landscape now lost forever. 144 pages. Hardback.

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