Junctions at Banbury - A Town and its Railways since 1850, by Barrie Trinder

Junctions at Banbury - A Town and its Railways since 1850, by Barrie Trinder

Published by the Banbury Historical Society in 2017, 266 pages. Hardback with Dust Jacket - 18cm by 25cm (N6821)

Brand New Book

From the inside front fly leaf: This is a work both of railway history and of local history. It details the growth ofthe railway network in the south Midlands and analyses the services, both local and long-distance, offered by the railway companies. It is written by an experienced historian who enjoys and knows about railways but takes a more detached and dispassionate view of railway operations than many authors of published works on railway history. It makes extensive use of data from nineteenth-century Banbury news­papers, from census enumerators' returns, time­tables, maps and archive photographs.

Where census returns make it possible, the navvies who built the lines in 'Banburyshire' are analysed in detail. Railways delivered coal to Banbury, and goods to be sold in its shops, and took away the products of the town's manufacturers. One chapter deals with ironstone mining in the Banbury region and with the role of the railways in taking ore to distant blast furnaces.

Banbury railwaymen formed one of the largest occupational groups in the town and were involved in many local organisations. Their activities had consequences far beyond the town's boundaries. They drove, fired, signalled or shunted many passing trains which made it possible for West Midlanders to participate in King George V's Silver Jubilee celebrations in 1935 and for supporters of Newcastle United FC to see their team play at Fratton Park in 1952. Railwaymen performed essential roles in the two World Wars of the twentieth century, and enabled the growth of the family seaside holiday from the 1930s, and its particular popularity between 1946 and 1964.They distributed foodstuffs of many kinds, and performed vital services for the motor industries of Oxford and the West Midlands. The book describes the depression into which Banbury's railways sank in the late 1960s, and their subsequent revival. They are now busier than at any time in the past and their future can be regarded with optimism. The book ends at an appropriate milepost