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The SOMERSET & DORSET RAILWAY Bath to Bournemouth The Main Line and Branches


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6 hours ago, Royal42 said:

Are there any publications for the link Evercreech Junction to Burnham on Sea?

 

Mike

Burnham on Sea

Hello Mike

 

I don't have the book myself, but you could try Highbridge in its Heyday (by Colin Maggs). 

 

It's on Amazon, but perhaps try the Somerset & Dorset Railway Heritage Trust, Midsomer Norton (01761 411221, open Saturday I think) or the Somerset & Dorset Railway Trust, Washford ([email protected]).

 

Buying from them will help their charity work and I'm sure someone will give you a verbal description of the contents (if they have one in stock).

 

Brian 

 

 

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Posted (edited)
On 18/07/2021 at 12:57, queensquare said:

 

Will be interested in your thoughts. I'm hoping to get down to Titfield in Bath next week to pick up a copy - if I haven't melted by then!

 

Jerry

The book hasn't arrived yet, probably in a siding at Felixstowe....  It is on order though and I am looking forward to seeing it myself. 

 

Derek is a great bloke, always good to talk to, and his earlier book on the S&D published by Fox in Yeovil all those years ago is really worth getting hold of.

 

There are fewer ex enginemen around these days, over many years I have had huge pleasure listening to them and of course reading their books and articles.

 

Such fantastic characters, Peter Smith is possibly the doyen of the ex S&D men, with his wonderfully well written "Mendips Engineman".

 

Great Days

 

PS In the OPC Historical Survey book mentioned above, the Templecombe plan managed to omit all of the tracks!! I kid you not, take a look....

 

As for a "proper" book on the S&D as alluded to above, I'd love to publish one but do wonder how commercial such a proposition would prove to be here in the 21st Century?

 

I did produce "Somerset and Dorset Swansong", a very fine book if I say so myself, picture from inside appended, still available, a snip at £14.95 for a whole copy!

Chap1Wesscol.jpg

Edited by Not Jeremy
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2 hours ago, woodenhead said:

So some 55+ years since it's demise, people are expecting a new book on a very popular subject to have nothing in it mentioned or published by other people?

 

Certainly not but I am hoping for at least some of the pictures to have not been published before.

 

2 hours ago, woodenhead said:

Track plans are track plans, there may be a mistake in labelling, but ultimately the line is the line, most books that include plans will be very similar if not the same.

 

Well they're quite patently not. The example shown as a taster looks to be exactly the same as the one published by OPC over forty years ago (which was correctly dated 1921), now dated 1930! Bath Junction changed significantly in ten years. The two signal boxes shown were were removed and replaced by a new box. There were additional sidings, the gasworks had grown, the cricket pitch had gone to be replaced by an ever expanding Stothert and Pitt.... I could go on.

 

2 hours ago, woodenhead said:

 

Is the problem here more a case that people like to look at books before they purchase (I used to) and with no exhibitions it is proving difficult or do people really want to criticise a new publication before it's even been delivered.

 

As a devoted S&D enthusiast I shall be buying a copy regardless but I don't see anything wrong with pointing out a pretty fundamental error. If the new book turns out to be an updated version of the OPC Judge and Potts book (not without its errors) with a descent sprinkling of new pictures I will be perfectly happy.

 

Jerry

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41 minutes ago, Not Jeremy said:

The book hasn't arrived yet, probably in a siding at Felixstowe....  It is on order though and I am looking forward to seeing it myself. 

 

Make sure you let us know when its "in"....I assume it won't make it by this Thursday....

Chris

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The thing is at £35 its not cheap , so I think people want to know that its not the same material in a different format .   I know in the past I've been caught out buying books where the cover had changed but the content inside is exactly the same . Of course if you cant browse , you cant tell . 

 

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16 minutes ago, Gilbert said:

Make sure you let us know when its "in"....I assume it won't make it by this Thursday....

Chris

 

Hi Chris

 

It is possible but very unlikely, as of this morning my supplier hadn't yet received the book.

 

I am definitely getting it in though, it will be interesting to see what it is and what it isn't.

 

Going back to Derek Phillips, what was great about his earlier book from Fox 

 

Copies available here

 

was that the picture subjects were very "different" to those of Ivo Peters, whose work had sort of dominated the subject up until then through all his wonderful OPC books. Lots of freight for example, and detailed shots along the branch. This is not to take anything away from Ivo's wonderful pictures of course, but on which basis this book might be something a bit different?

 

It's hot, I'm not fancying doing any work, so I'll bore you all with a story....

 

Long story short; in summer of 1977 I was fortunate to find myself the sole guest of Ivo Peters in his flat in the Royal Crescent. Having shown me around his collection of things S&D he sat me down and asked what I would like to look at first. As I recall he suggested his 1956 album as being a "good vintage" - which it certainly was.

 

He was completely hospitable and open, he signed my books (of his, bought from "Whitemans" of course) and answered all of my questions quite happily. In the course of the afternoon, I asked him many things, including why he hadn't taken more photographs of Radstock, I think, to which his candid reply was that he didn't like it much as a subject, but also adding that he thought it would be there forever..

 

He was such a gentleman to me, made me feel very welcome, and when I left (hours later and after tea) he said I was very welcome to return to see him again more or less whenever I liked, which in the event I never did, for one reason and another.

 

My memory of the afternoon remains though, Ivo was very generous and welcoming to me.

 

All these years later I am privileged to know Julian a bit, and he is cast from the same mould, a top bloke.

 

Perhaps we need a new book of Ivo Peters pictures?!

 

Simon

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Your right its always better to see a book to see if there is new things. It is gob smacking how much new material keeps on appearing on Ebay so there is stuff out there. Its certainly not wanting to criticise just know if it is likely to be of interest. 

 

 

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14 minutes ago, Not Jeremy said:

 

Perhaps we need a new book of Ivo Peters pictures?!

 

Simon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I think that would prove to be extremely popular! 

 

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I bought a copy of this book a couple of years ago.

The Somerset and Dorset at Midford by Mike Arlett.  Almost encouraged me to model it.........

Edited by Jeff Smith
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3 hours ago, Not Jeremy said:

 

As for a "proper" book on the S&D as alluded to above, I'd love to publish one but do wonder how commercial such a proposition would prove to be here in the 21st Century?

 

 

Well, as indicated, I'd buy it! I'm afraid it does seem to me that many of those who express enthusiasm for the Somerset & Dorset are in fact only really interested in summer Saturdays in the last decade before closure, which by a rough calculation amounts to about 0.3% of the line's existence! I'm probably being most unfair and I do know there are plenty of exceptions; my prejudice is no doubt driven by an even greater prejudice against Bulleid's ugly engines...

 

4 hours ago, BMacdermott said:

I don't have the book myself, but you could try Highbridge in its Heyday (by Colin Maggs). 

 

That is a book about the works and its products, chiefly. It is excellent.

Edited by Compound2632
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Just a thought...

 

As many of us now purchase books online, with no chance of seeing them beforehand, maybe publishers could give more expanded spiel about their new offerings. Then buyers could make a more informed decision, whether to get the book or not.

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Puts me in mind of buying books from the Railway Book Club, or whatever it was called, in the eighties just from the catalogue.  Some were good, some were a disappointment!  I still have some S&D ones from then!

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5 hours ago, Legend said:

The thing is at £35 its not cheap , so I think people want to know that its not the same material in a different format .   I know in the past I've been caught out buying books where the cover had changed but the content inside is exactly the same . Of course if you cant browse , you cant tell . 

 

I got caught out with that once.

I had a book in my collection and out one day I saw a book on the same subject by a different publisher and with a different title and bought it.

When I got home I found it identical content to the previous one but a different title, cover & publisher. (Bit naughty IMHO)

It wasn't one of those cheapo re-prints!

IIRC I was able to return it without loss.

Edited by melmerby
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9 minutes ago, melmerby said:

I got caught out with that once.

I had a book in my collection and out one day I saw a book on the same subject by a different publisher and with a different title and bought it.

When I got home I found it identical content to the previous one but a different title, cover & publisher. (Bit naughty IMHO)

It wasn't one of those cheapo re-prints!

IIRC I was able to return it without loss.

Was it a not obvious A5 version of an A4 original...if so I have been similarly caught out...?

Chris

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25 minutes ago, Jeff Smith said:

Puts me in mind of buying books from the Railway Book Club, or whatever it was called, in the eighties just from the catalogue.  Some were good, some were a disappointment!  I still have some S&D ones from then!

That's where I got my S&D ones from too!

 

It's well worth getting both editions of Mac Hawkins "Then and Now" book though, as each is substantially different.

Edited by Peter Kazmierczak
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10 hours ago, Not Jeremy said:

PS In the OPC Historical Survey book mentioned above, the Templecombe plan managed to omit all of the tracks!! I kid you not, take a look....

 

 

It also managed to omit all stations Broadstone (exclusive ) to Bournemouth West (inclusive) as well as Wimborne.

 

Now, to be sure, all these stations were strictly London & South Western, but Bournemouth was pretty fundamantal to the SDJR's operation - not to mention Branksome depot - so I would hope that Derek and Irwell have addressed that omission in their volume.

 

Personally I'd like to see a 21st century version of Robin Atthill's history, but I very much doubt there would be any market for that now.

 

Regards

TMc

21/07/2021

 

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Having just read all the comments above, I can assure everyone that they will be well satisfied with their copies of this splendid new book on the S & D. I can now confirm they have arrived in the warehouse and we managed to get the first hundred or so away yesterday, so they will start to arrive today by courier for those who got in early. As a result I am sure we will get a few satisfied reviews on here before long. The warehouse will get stuck into packing a fresh batch today, however even priced as £35.95 as some folk say (for 350 pages ie just over 10p per page) they are selling fast, we estimate with the trade sales included, now over half the print run has already been sold.

 

Nonetheless once my own copy arrives in the Highlands I will put together a video for YouTube and our website to show everyone just what you will be getting for £35.95 if you are quick before they perhaps sell out.

 

Meanwhile have a look here:

https://strathwood.co.uk/products/the-somerset-dorset-railway-bath-to-bournemouth-the-main-line-and-branches

 

Kevin

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My copy arrived this morning, bubble wrapped inside a cardboard sleeve inside a plastic bag - perfect.

 

At least three SDJR livery images, lots of Midland locos and not many Spamcans.

 

Looks like many of the Irwell Press books on the south west so I am looking forward to the read.

 

However, it needs to go onto the shelf, at the moment I am reading Andy Chard's tome on Manchester's Railways.

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19 hours ago, Not Jeremy said:

 

Perhaps we need a new book of Ivo Peters pictures?!

 

Simon

 

Hi Simon, the only problem with Ivo - he didn't seem to go south of Templecombe very often!!!????:sungum:

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3 minutes ago, bike2steam said:

Hi Simon, the only problem with Ivo - he didn't seem to go south of Templecombe very often!!!????:sungum:

 

My impression is that his aim was not so much to document the working of the Somerset & Dorset as to obtain atmospheric photographs - for which a double-headed train attacking a long 1:50 gradient was a more attractive proposition than a single-headed train rolling up and down the undulating gradients of Dorsetshire.

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14 hours ago, Peter Kazmierczak said:

That's where I got my S&D ones from too!

 

 

Not surprised, when first Haynes, then later Ian Allan, took over the OPC print they flooded the RBC with reprinted OPC titles, but, according to Rex Kennedy, mostly the wrong ones!!:sungum:

 

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Just received the books and, as expected, it is a very well produced book.

A cursory look through showed that the signal diagram dated 1921 for Bath Junction shows the 1924 signal box and there are issues with the track diagram of Burnham on Sea too. This diagram dated 1921 shows just one track on the south side of the jetty but there is badly faded footage in colour showing two tracks on this video.

To be fair, a lot of what has been published about the Burnham jetty is ambiguous and contradictory and there is a need for some original research based on primary sources rather than repeating past errors.  It would have been nice if the author of this book had done that research but hey-ho.

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On 20/07/2021 at 14:08, Not Jeremy said:

 

PS In the OPC Historical Survey book mentioned above, the Templecombe plan managed to omit all of the tracks!! I kid you not, take a look....

 

 

 

You must have a different OPC book to me as mine has all the Templecombe tracks.............:nyam:

 

14 hours ago, watfordtmc said:

It also managed to omit all stations Broadstone (exclusive ) to Bournemouth West (inclusive) as well as Wimborne.

 

Now, to be sure, all these stations were strictly London & South Western, but Bournemouth was pretty fundamantal to the SDJR's operation - not to mention Branksome depot - so I would hope that Derek and Irwell have addressed that omission in their volume.

 

Personally I'd like to see a 21st century version of Robin Atthill's history, but I very much doubt there would be any market for that now.

 

Regards

TMc

21/07/2021

Wimborme is included.

 

It does claim to be "A Historical Survey of the Somerset & Dorset Railway"

Note Not the train services, in fact trains are rarely featured in the book as it concentrates on track layouts and structures.

As such not including the LSWR stations is fine by me, The Mac Hawkins book which is much wider in scope, does those.

 

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, PenrithBeacon said:

.............there are issues with the track diagram of Burnham on Sea too. This diagram dated 1921 shows just one track on the south side of the jetty but there is badly faded footage in colour showing two tracks on this video.

To be fair, a lot of what has been published about the Burnham jetty is ambiguous and contradictory and there is a need for some original research based on primary sources rather than repeating past errors.  It would have been nice if the author of this book had done that research but hey-ho.

Chris Handley's 'The Maritime Activities of the Somerset & Dorset Railway' has a map of Burnham from 1903. There are two lines running on the pier, that on the south side ran the whole length of the structure, the other was a shorter siding, about a third of the length, leaving the main line at the start of the pier. There is also a photo in 1908 of P&A Campbell's steamer the 'Waverley' calling to pick up a large crowd of passengers, probably for a pleasure cruise across to Barry or Penarth. By that time the pier was not owned by the railway. Their interests in it finished in 1905. The photo shows the junction of the two lines on the pier.

Edited by phil_sutters
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