Note: Book dimensions in centimetres
Writing/ signage on inside cover.
Has protective cover.
Buckinghamshire has always been noted for its serene and tranquil countryside set amid the Chiltern Hill, though in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries the county became divided effectively into two parts, the southern part being geared to industry because of its close proximity to London, while the northern part housed the estates of wealthy landowners and businessmen such as the Verneys, the Duke of Buckingham and the Rothschilds. As a result of such activity and poor condition of the roads, better communications were sought with the introduction of railways, to a number of large villages and towns.
Most of the schemes that were successful fell into one of the two categories, namely main line or branch line. Buckinghamshire could boast being penetrated by the main London to Birmingham route, the old great central from London to South Yorkshire, the western main line to Birmingham, the main route tot he south-west and the cross-country main line from Oxford to Cambridge. Additionally, these were fed by no less than thirteen branch lines.
After the grouping of the minor railway companies into five larger entities in 1923 four of them were represented to some degree. These were the Great Western, London and North Eastern, London Midland and Scottish, and Metropolitan railway companies. Prior to Nationalisation in 1948, the Metropolitan Railway closed two branch lines, a scenario frequently repeated by British Railways through the late 1950s to the mid-1960s. Over two thirds of the routes in Buckinghamshire disappeared, along with the steam engine which was replaced by the diesel.
Buckinghamshire not only boasted a fine selection of railways but a wide variety of locomotives, carriages and station building, which I have endeavoured to depict in the following pages, as well as trying to revive some memories of the last days of steam.