FINIAL PUBLISHING


Finial Publishing Home Page

The magazines we have produced

Some of the books we have produced

Who we are and where you can contact us

General enquiries or comments to Finial Publishing can be sent to mail@finial.co.uk

This is one of the books produced by Finial Publishing

THE DIDCOT STORY
The Great Western Society
at Didcot since 1967


By Michael H C Baker and John Villers

 

ISBN: 1-900467-34-8
Size: 245mm x 190mm landscape (approx), Hardback, 104 pages plus cover,
296 pictures mostly colour.

Price £16.95 including p&p (UK)
Please add £2.50 postage Europe,
£5.00 Airmail rest of world.

Available from:
The Great Western Society bookshop
Didcot Railway Centre,
Didcot,
Oxfordshire
OX11 7NJ

Telephone: 01235 817200
Email: www.didcotrailwaycentre.org.uk  

 

The authors, Michael H C Baker (Right)
and John Villers (Left).

It has long been the intention of the Great Western Society to publish a book telling, in pictures with detailed captions, the story of the Society at Didcot. 2007 marks the 40th anniversary of the beginnings of Didcot Railway Centre and this is therefore the ideal occasion to launch such a book.
The Great Western Railway was the only main line company which lasted long enough to celebrate its centenary, in 1935, and although it was absorbed by British Railways in 1948 its traditions and unique way of doing things survived through the decades. The 1960s saw the rapid disappearance of steam and so in 1961 four schoolboys who spent their leisure time train spotting from the footbridge spanning the tracks at Southall decided that something had to be done. To their slight surprise and trepidation a letter in the Railway Magazine appealing for funds to purchase one of the little 14xx class 0-4-2Ts which were based at Southall produced an immediate response and so the Great Western Society was born.
No other railway company, large or small, has anything like the Great Western Society which in its forty year history at Didcot has devoted itself to preserving just about every aspect of Britain’s most loved railway company, from printed ephemera, cutlery and genuine Broad Gauge rails last used in 1892, to seventy foot long wooden framed carriages, massive steam cranes and a King class locomotive, an example of the most powerful 4-6-0 in the British Isles.
Within the 104 pages of ‘The Didcot Story’ are nearly 300 pictures, some black and white but mostly colour, recording the extraordinarily diverse and all-encompassing re-creation of God’s Wonderful Railway from 1967 onwards, since when what was simply a locomotive depot situated within the triangle of lines north of Didcot station has been steadily transformed into the unique Railway Centre of today.
The book includes a fascinating insight into Didcot before the Society’s arrival, the movement of locomotives and stock from various locations to Didcot, the development of the Railway Centre from a barren site surrounding the engine shed, a pictorial record of each of the Society’s locomotives since preservation and in their earlier working lives - some never before published - and pictures of many of the Centre’s carriages and wagons. It records many of the locomotives that have visited over the years, recalls the outings onto the main line between 1972 and 1980 of the Society’s Vintage Train of Great Western carriages hauled both by its own locomotives and sometimes what have since become historic diesels and electrics in their own right, shows the development of the award-winning Broad Gauge layout, includes the achievements of the Society often overlooked by other publications such as the wide variety of artefacts in the Relics Display and the educational facilities for today’s young people, and concludes with a glimpse to the future with the re-creation of the steam railmotor and Saint and County class locomotives.

‘The Didcot Story’ is on sale at the bookshop at Didcot Railway Centre


PROFITS FROM THE SALE OF ‘THE DIDCOT STORY’
WILL GO TO THE GREAT WESTERN SOCIETY
TO HELP ACHIEVE ITS AMBITIONS
TO RE-CREATE LONG-LOST LOCOMOTIVE CLASSES
AND TO FURTHER EXPAND DIDCOT RAILWAY CENTRE.

General enquiries or comments to Finial Publishing can be sent to mail@finial.co.uk


Finial Publishing Home Page

The magazines we have produced

Some of the books we have produced

Who we are and where you can contact us