First Pasture Price: £29.99
Status: Pre-order, expected May 2017
The Snailbeach District Railways in Shropshire was one of Britain's lesser known public narrow gauge railways. Andy Cuckson reveals a fascinating story of not only about this railway, which never carried passengers, but also about the mines it served and the people who built and worked it. One such person was engineer and mine manager Henry Dennis.
The book tells of the early railways in the area and the many plans to bring access to this part of Shropshire. Of the railway all aspects are described, from the various steam locomotives, rolling stock and engineering to the operation and staff.
The rundown of the mines brought problems but despite these difficulties the line survived finding a new role hauling roadstone, and became part of the Colonel Stephens light railway empire. After the steam locomotives were condemned, an agricultural tractor kept the traffic moving. After 82 years, from 1877, the line finally closed in 1959, but surprisingly the company still exists on paper.
The book includes 273 illustrations, many of the photographs never been published before, with many of the maps and drawings been specially commissioned. Andy Cuckson also interviewed many of the older residents in the area who told him much about the railway, making The Snailbeach District Railways a comprehensive guide.