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Title:Wagons Of The xxx Era series (5 books) Review image
Author:David Larkin
Publisher:Kestrel Railway Books, Southampton
Format:Book
Subject:Wagons
Category:Photos
Spec:96 pages, 10.75in x 8.5in, card covers, B&W photos
Publication date:2006-2010
Summary:Another set of books from David Larkin featuring many more photos from his seemingly endless collection.
Review:David Larkin followed up his 'Working Wagons' series with this set of books focusing on the revenue-earning wagons owned by British Railways. Although the breadth of the subject matter is less (for example private owner and departmental wagons are not covered), the detail is increased. This includes tabulated lists of build batches for each type (complete with detailed build dates) and coverage of significant modifications, usually listing the affected numbers. This is interesting but seems somewhat out of place in books that are subtitled 'A Pictorial Study..'. Taking extreme examples, the middle volume lists the 16ton Mineral wagons that were rebuilt with vacuum brakes, resulting in seven pages filled mainly with a list of numbers, while the 1969-1982 book has eleven pages that are mostly a list of numbers of rebodied 21ton Hoppers.
The photos themselves are mainly excellent, although a few are rather flat and murky, lacking contrast. The first volume has to make use of some official BR 'works' shots to cover certain types, the majority of other photos being taken in service.
Reviewed:10/02/2018 by Thomas Young (Comments made by others can appear in the notes section towards the bottom of this page)
Sample pages:(Click on any image to view full-sized in a new window)
Page image Wagons built in BR's first 6 years are the subject of the first volume
Page image Builds of each type are outlined (including those ordered by the pre-nationalisation companies).
Page image Photos are generally good, including a few official views
Page image The second book covers the period 1955 to 1961
Page image Details are given of major wagon modifications as well as new builds
Page image Many of the photos were understandably taken after the period covered.
Page image The title confused me! Later books are described as British Rail rather than British Railways.
Page image The third book includes the early air-braked types
Page image For a 'Pictorial Study', this book has a lot of numbers in it. This list of 16 tonners runs for 7 pages!
Page image The Early British Rail Era covers the years 1969 to 1982
Page image TOPS was introduced during the period covered by this book. The introduction lists the new codes, with number ranges for many of them
Page image All photographs in this series of books are black and white, the reproduction normally being OK
Page image The cover of the fifth and final book, covering the years 1983 to 1995
Page image Details of wagon modifications and rebuilds usually includes lists of affected numbers.
Page image Some of the photos come out looking a bit flat or dull
Notes: No notes have been left yet. ?There may be some notes posted but which have not yet been approved.
Edits:Record edited 6 times.The 5 most recent edits are listed below.

Time / DateEdited byChange
02:04 on Mon 08/04/2019Thomas YoungNew image added
02:03 on Mon 08/04/2019Thomas YoungNew image added
02:00 on Mon 08/04/2019Thomas YoungNew image added
01:59 on Mon 08/04/2019Thomas YoungNew image added
01:56 on Mon 08/04/2019Thomas YoungNew image added