The Kilometre Millionaire: French Railway Performance from Steam to LGV (Mainline & Maritime)

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Leading member of the Railway Performance Society, Alan Varley, discusses and analyses a lifetime of railway travel across the SNCF network. Alan’s interest in timing trains began in his formative years shortly after the Second World War. His first journeys in France were made over 50 years ago, in 1964, and since 1968 Alan has been a permanent resident of the south of France and has travelled extensively across the entire French railway network, clocking up over a million kilometers in the process.

The Kilometre Millionaire: French Railway Performance from Steam to LGV is divided into 20 chapters, most of which examine journeys in a particular area with a few looking at journeys over specific types of line, eg. LGVs. Each journey is described in detail with particular regard to factors affecting performance. The topography of the featured line and other local factors are covered, as well as operating circumstances encountered on the chosen day of travel. The book also contains several anecdotes and personal observations relating to the author’s experiences whilst recording each journey.

The book covers all the main types of traction including steam, diesel and electric locomotive haulage, diesel and electric multiple units and high-speed TGVs. Many of the journeys described are accompanied by tabulated performance logs showing the distance along each line and the speed recorded at various points along the route.

An interesting personal account of one man’s travels across the railways of France. 304 pages. Hardback.

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