Steam Nostalgia in the North of England is a pictorial story of British railways in the north of England, in those heady days when steam ruled the rails.
In the 1950s it was decided to phase out steam on British railways and to modernise the system. At the time train spotting was very popular, mostly among schoolboys, who spent the majority of their free time engrossed in their hobby, bunking into railway sheds and avoiding the shedmaster to gain the excitement of climbing aboard one of these huge locomotives, as they sat cold or simmering in the bleak and dirty engine shed. They would also wait patiently by the side of the permanent way, hoping to `cop' the few engines that had yet to be underlined in their Ian Allan ABC of British Railway Locomotives: the 2s 6d local edition or, if they could afford it, the Combined Volume at 10s. Some used the basic cameras of the day to photograph these behemoths of the silver road.
This book takes the reader on a trip to such fondly remembered days, moving through the northern railways of the 1950s to the 1970s and taking in the last years of steam. Offering 180 previously unpublished photographs taken by Philip Braithwaite, a respected railway photographer with an extensive archive, Steam Nostalgia is narrated by Paul Hurley, a freelance writer with many books and articles to his name.
Paul Hurley has been a freelance writer since 2002 and has been writing professionally ever since. He has had magazine, local and national newspaper credits and has written several books for Amberley on the local history of Cheshire. Since retiring from the police in 2002 he has amassed a CV that takes in a three part article in the Steam World magazine, one in the Backtrack magazine and many other magazine articles not relating to the railway scene. He lives in Winsford with his wife and his hobbies are writing, travel, motorcycling and classic cars. Philip became interested in railways in 1956 and over the next two years took up railway photography. His first photographs were of the Warrington area and when starting work in 1960, after earning a little more money he started to travel further afield and take photographs of the highest calibre. He also widened his field of interest to include trains the world over and especially South Africa, his home for a while. He now has a large archive encompassing British Railways and the worldwide railway scene.