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Son of a GWR engine driver L A Summers was a professional teacher and historian for 30 years. He was involved with research on errant pupil behaviour and on teaching history through computers. After leaving teaching, a lifelong interest in railways, inspired by a Didcot school teacher, led to his joining the Great Western Society as editor of the Great Western Echo magazine which has been revolutionised under his direction. He strongly believes in the primacy of research over the long-accepted but often erroneous writings of old-style railway authors. His first railway article was published over 40 years ago and since 1990 he has contributed regularly to railway magazines, sometimes controversial and often revealing articles, in particular, about locomotive design. He has travelled widely and photographed trains all over the world; an artist and graphic layout specialist, the last skill he readily admits to having picked up almost entirely from his wife, Barbara. His other interests include walking the dog, admiring his wife, music, politics and (same thing really!) writing fiction.