Our Home Railways Part 4. The London, Brighton & South Coast , by W.J. Gordon, 1911 [ebook]


Paper- back book, 8.75”x  6”. 40pp, 3 color plates, 4 whole page black and white plates,  14 black and white photographs. One of the first, if not the first, “part-works” to deal with railways.



Launched at 9d per copy in August 1911 (although later issues carry paper stickers increasing price to 1/-) It was also about the first time that a quality railway publication was within the reach of a prudent schoolboy, prepared to sacrifice sherbet dips, gobstoppers, “The Magnet” and “Chatterbox” for a couple of weeks.  Each issue included a colour frontispiece of the railway’s crest, a full page colour print of one of the company’s passenger carriages, and a stunning double page spread of a locomotive. In this case one of Loco Supt. Douglas Earle Marsh’s impressive “Atlantics”. These were in fact “cousins” of the large boilered “Atlantics” introduced on the Great Northern Railwayby H.A Ivatt.

The relationship is explained by the fact that Marsh had been Ivatt’s works manager at Doncaster Plant when the first of the GN locos was being built and he had a hand in the design.  After his appointment to the Brighton job Ivatt sent him a set of the drawings, so obviously had valued Marsh’s contribution. Like the Doncaster engines, the Brighton machines gave an impression of compact power, although whether the Company with its comparatively short runs to Brighton, Portsmouth or Newhaven really needed these big tender engines is a moot point.

“Our Home Railways” was also issued as a two volume set, but these and two modern single volume reprints were less than satisfactory, in that for production reasons, the colour plates had to be “grouped” together, divorced from the text relating to theirrailways. One of the modern reprints even produced the colour plates in black & white… Worth having for the colour plates alone!



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