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Ian Lothian attended Dunfermline High School before going on to study economics and accounting in Glasgow. After completing his further education, he joined the Civil Service, initially working on the LEO computer project. Early retirement meant he was able to spend more time on his hobby of photographing trains. Ian has had railway photographs published in magazines and publications in the UK, Canada, the USA, various European countries, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. In 2003, he won the inaugural Photographer of the Year competition organised by Railways Illustrated magazine, one highlight of which was being asked to name Freightliner Heavy Haul's 66618 at the National Railway Museum at York.