Lambourn Branch Revisited, The by Kevin Robertson Soft Cover 2008
Lambourn Branch Revisited, The by Kevin Robertson Soft Cover 2008
Lambourn Branch Revisited, The by Kevin Robertson Soft Cover 2008
Lambourn Branch Revisited, The by Kevin Robertson Soft Cover 2008

Lambourn Branch Revisited, The by Kevin Robertson Soft Cover 2008

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Lambourn Branch Revisited, The by Kevin Robertson Soft Cover 2008
 
Lambourn Branch Revisited, The by Kevin Robertson
Soft Cover
Copyright 2008
128 pages
CONTENTS
Introduction
Acknowledgments
The Chance for Expansion
The Independent and Early Days
Working the Line
Life at Lambourn 1930 and 1950
The Diesel Railcars
To Lambourn in Colour
A Community Railway51
Life at Welford Park, the memories of Bernard (Curly) Smith59
Ray and Eric Hobbs reminisce
Decline and Revival combined
1960 Working Instructions
Building Drawings
Addenda to the original work128

INTRODUCTION
Ihave wanted to produce this book for some time. Over 20 years in fact, although at every previous attempt outside circumstances intervened. In consequence it took a chance telephone call and meeting to really push the project along. Indeed, in the summer of 2007 I realised that no more excuses could be made and it was a question of probably now or never.
Having been involved with Roger Simmonds on the original Lamboum Branch book produced in 1984, it inevitably transpired that further material would come to light. Sometimes it was a photograph, at other times a snippet of information, or maybe an artefact paper or otherwise, all competing to be added to the history of what may truly be described as a `typical Great Western Branch Line'. At this point I expect the purists to stand up and start throwing brick-bats, 'Ah, but the Lambourn line never did this  and it never carried that " Fine, perhaps it did not do everything that would put it in the `typical' criteria, but what it did do is provide a service to the community for over sixty years, a community which during that time could no more have imagined a valley without trains than we could nowadays visualise one with them.
With time now fast approaching half a century since trains ran to Lambourn, it might be thought there was little left to uncover. I doubt that very much. Any form of research will answer many questions but equally throw up others that were unknown of beforehand.
I have to confess I never travelled on the Lambourn line nor, indeed, saw it in operation although I did come close. Back in 1971 I recall writing to British Railways enquiring over the possibility of a trip in the brake van of a goods train from Newbury over the then extent of the route to Welford Park. This was approved, but subject to the sum of .00 being paid, no doubt to cover the wages of an Inspector who would have to accompany me. Regretfully I declined. As a poor and impoverished student I could ill afford such an amount. Nowadays I would willingly pay that .00, perhaps even a little more, should that opportunity still be available. Of course it never will be. Later, I also missed the chance to travel on the 1973 specials. Not living in the area at the time meant I was unaware until later that the event had even occurred. C'est la vie.
This book is not intended to be a re-run of history, neither have I attempted to distil the same facts in a different form. Instead it is a new, more personal approach, which I trust will have a wider appeal, to the enthusiast of course and also to the local community.
All I can hope is that, in consequence of this latest attempt, a few more facts, features and even funnies relevant to the railway may be revealed. If those of you reading this book gain as much pleasure from its pages as I have had in their compilation then the exercise will certainly have been worthwhile.

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