Customer Review

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, but mostly stations rather than journeys, 29 Aug. 2013
This review is from: Paul Atterbury's Favourite Railway Journeys (Hardcover)
In its general style, this is exactly what I have come to expect from Paul Atterbury. However, the title is misleading, because more than half the book focuses on station scenes and station architecture, mostly not on the routes chosen for the featured journeys. I don't mind that, but if you're looking for a book that focuses on journeys and what you can expect to see and do at the places along the way, this really isn't the book. The author is a fan of old trains and all things associated with them rather than a travel writer. For a book that is more of travel book, see Great British Railway Journeys. I like that book to, but in a different way. I bought this book because I am also a fan of old trains and all things associated with them, and I am very pleased with it.

The journeys selected are still possible by train. As you would expect from Paul, he has selected secondary and branch lines for his journeys, which are:-

Liskeard to Looe
Bristol to Weymouth
Brockenhurst to Lymington
Hastings to Ashford
Llandudno to Blaenau Ffestiniog
Machynlleth to Pwllheli
Shrewsbury to Newport
Twyford to Henley
Marks Tey to Sudbury
Ipswich to Lowestoft
Oxenholme to Windermere
Middlesbrough to Whitby
Glasgow to Oban
Fort William to Mallaig

The coverage of station scenes and architecture is fascinating, although if you like this aspect of the book, I recommend Britain's Lost Railways: The Twentieth-Century Destruction of our Finest Railway Architecture if you haven't already read it. That book is presented from an architect's perspective, but the author knew as he wrote it that railway fans would be a significant part - perhaps the main part - of his market.

A couple of minor points to note are that the author comments on stations that are normally busy but pictured when quiet (I think these pictures could have been taken on a Sunday) and that the front cover picture at the bottom right showing a couple at a station does not appear in the main book; normally all of Paul's cover pictures, front and back, appear somewhere in the main book.

This is a fantastic book in the best traditions of the author's railway books. Just don't regard it as a travel guide. As I noted earlier, if you want something like that, try Great British Railway Journeys.
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