British Railways Stinks: The Life and Work of Britain's Lost Railway Chemists (Gresley)

Back Order

The term “stink” has long been used informally to refer to a person engaged in the science of chemistry, hence this book, British Railways Stinks, contains a series of anecdotal accounts of the exploits of chemists on Britain’s railways.

The first railway chemical laboratory was opened in 1864 by the London & North Western Railway at Crewe, and the last ones lost their direct link to the rail industry following privatisation of the network in 1996.

Whatever their expertise, every railway chemist or “stink” has been asked the same question: "What do you actually do"? That is precisely the question this book attempts to answer. It covers many aspects of the work, from a BR chemist going to San Francisco to blow up a water melon to declaring an empty coal wagon a confined space; from whitewashing a passenger train, in service, in a couple of seconds to questioning, on chemical grounds, the mental state of the chairman of the British Railways Board!

British Railway Stinks tells the unusual, astonishing and sometimes downright hilarious story of the railway “nuts” who decided what exactly the “wrong kind of leaves” were. 208 pages including 32 pages of illustrations. Hardback.

Sign Up to Our Newsletter

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better.