SOUTHERN RAILWAY GALLERY – A PICTORIAL JOURNEY THROUGH TIME
PEN & SWORD
+ Great selection of images, nicely presented
- Too many factual errors
The Southern Region has understandably been in the minds of many enthusiasts in 2017, what with the 50th anniversary of the end of steam, so a book celebrating the history of the region is superbly well-timed.
Southern Railway Gallery presents a cross-section of everything Southern, from pre-Grouping designs and Bulleid ‘Pacifics’, to the SR’s EMUs and paddle steamers. If you love anything and everything Southern, the photos collected here are a real delight.
There are even sections dedicated to Isle of Wight steam and the Lynton & Barnstaple Railway; it’s extraordinarily thorough.
It’s disappointing then that the text is riddled with errors. The legendary A. B. MacLeod is referred to as ‘AB McCloud’ and LSWR CME Dugald Drummond is curiously named ‘Dougal’. Locomotives’ identities are often mixed up, even when the engine is clearly identifiable in the image.
Some engines’ names are italicised, some are not, companies are variously styled as SECR, SE&CR, or S E C R, so it can make for difficult reading. The text lacks consistency in style and accuracy, and it’s frustrating because otherwise this is an excellent photo album – and one that (text problems aside) is beautifully presented.
As such, this is a book you look at rather than read and if you love the Southern (and can look past the errors) this is still well worth picking up.
Price: £25 (£20 online, plus £4 p&p)
T: 01226 734222