A locomotive headboard is a board placed on the front of an engine that shows the name of the train. First used in 1912 by the North British Railway, the last in regular use appeared in 1984 - although Virgin Trains initiated a short-lived revival in 1996. Dave Peel's guide to the subject, researched over five years, aims to provide a comprehensive history. It covers all named trains that ran with headboards from initial small-scale use, through the LNER's extensive usage in the 1930s, mass headboarding in the early BR period, to final decline. Differing designs and construction methods are examined in detail, while variations in shape and style are fully explored. About four hundred photographs are also included: although largely steam age in content, they also illustrate diesel and electric locomotion. This is the first history of loco headboards. It will be an invaluable reference source for all railway historians, while railway modellers will also find it of great assistance.
Dave Peel was a teacher in Leeds for thirty years before retiring to Dorset. He has been a keen railway enthusiast all his life, and since retirement has spent an increasing amount of time researching this, the definitive book on Loco Headboards.