The Southern After Steam (Hardback)
A Vision in Blue and Grey
After the end of steam on the Southern in July 1967, the author concentrated primarily on recording the Southern scene, to start with in black and white and then from 1972 in colour. In so doing he built up a huge collection of slides for the period 1972 to 1988 concentrating on the lines close to his Kent home or in the London area but also with some images taken on the Central and Western Division main lines. The book contains more than 260 high quality colour images of second generation rolling stock set out by class of electric or diesel multiple units and locomotives, ranging from 4 SUBs and EPBs through Hastings Diesel units to Class 73 Electro-Diesels, a total of fifteen classes all told. The severe winters of 1985 and 1987 are also included and Departmental stock isn’t forgotten. Lovers of the Southern Region in the 1970s and 80s prior to the introduction of replacement stock will find much of interest in this book.
This book is first and foremost the story of the enginemen and their steeds which brought the steam era to an end on the Southern. It is therefore primarily about locomotive performance but enlivened by stories about how that was achieved and also about the band of young men who followed the exploits of men and machines, day and night over those last two years. It includes a substantial contribution from an ex-Nine Elms fireman and many anecdotes about the enginemen. The book contains about eighty train running logs plus records of lineside observations, detailed descriptions of the work covered…By Don Benn
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