|Sub-Titled: An Intimate Portrait of the Watlington Branch : The Stations
This volume continues the ground-breaking branch line history which chronicles the history and life of the Watlington branch. Running unobtrusively through 9 miles of beautiful Chiltern countryside, it linked Princes Risborough in Buckinghamshire to the small town of Watlington in Oxfordshire.
Bypassed by all important routes, the people of Watlington hoped that a railway connecting it to the Wycombe line and thus to London and the rest of the country, would bring about a reversal in the town's fortunes. The townspeople were to be sorely disappointed for neither Watlington nor its railway was ever to have a heyday.
But that is much of the charm of the place, and it is the quietness, the slowness and the almost storybook nature of the railway that attracted the authors of this fascinating and absorbing book to spend many years researching it. From its opening in 1872 through its very mean years under private ownership, and rebirth under the Great Western, to its closure in 1957, the history of the line is traced in considerable detail, but this is no ordinary railway text.
The authors believe in their approach that railway history is not just to do with facts, dates and locomotive classes, but it is also about the people who worked on and used the line, and this account relies very heavily upon lengthy interviews with the former staff and local people.
Throughout the book the characters shine through, making it a compelling and most enjoyable read. Lavishly illustrated with hundreds of wonderful photographs, this definitive history of one of Britain's most appealing lines should not be missed by anyone interested in railways, local history or in the way things used to be.
Volume 2 includes a portrait of the junction at Princes Risborough, traffic handled, recollections of the regular traders and even the farmers who used the railway, and an account of Chinnor Lime and Cement Works.
· Chapter 1 False Hopes
· Chapter 2 Taylor's Railway
· Chapter 3 Under New Manangment
· Chapter 4 Pocock's Pride 1922-1939
· Chapter 5 The War Years
· Chapter 6 All Change
· Chapter 7 The 7.25am From Watlington
· Chapter 8 The Final Years
1. Specification of Rolling Stock for the Watlington & Princes Risborough Railway
2. Manning Wardle & Co's Account for Repairs to W&PRR Engine, August 1852
3. Valuation of W & RPP Engines, Carriages and Wagons, 25th June 1863
4. W&PRR Traffic Receipts and Expenses 1872-1881
5. Descriptive List of W&PRR Carriages and Wagons 17th July 1883
6. Extract from 1962 GWR Branch Line Report
7. Watlington Signal Box Diagram following removing of signals
8. Track Plan of Watlington Station
9. Watlington Locomotive Allocations 1901-1948
10. Statements of Traffic dealt with at Stations
11. A Selection of Tickets
12. List of Station Masters
13. Gradient Profile
14. Watlington Branch Permanent Way Staff
By Paul Karau, Chris Turner
Hardback. 225x280mm. 216 pages
212 black & white photographs