Cherished, admired and frequently used as an excuse for lateness, the railways occupy a special place in our hearts. Trains are not just a practical mode of transport, but also a way of tracing our social history over the past 150 years, from technological progress and design to cultural change and the impact they have had on our landscape. Full of facts, trivia and anecdotes, this engaging compendium looks at the heyday of the railways around the world, chronicling the shift from steam trains to diesel and electric and the challenge of running during two World Wars. This book also includes railway trivia from around the world, from the locomotive to the Japanese bullet train. A broad range of aspects is covered, from the types of trains and services, key people and station architecture, to station pets, accidents and crime, and the depiction of the railways in literature and art. Chock-full of information, and illustrated with line drawings throughout, this miscellany is perfect for railway enthusiasts, history buffs or those who would like to learn more about this fascinating form of transport that is so often taken for granted.
Born in Wimbledon in 1962, Peter Saxton developed an early interest in railways. On leaving university he joined British Rail and spent twelve years working at various London locations, including a stint at the International Office at Victoria. A complete career change then took him into the world of books - he has spent fifteen years at a leading bookseller and currently works in supplier relations.