Locomotives of the Hull and Barnsley Railway, by Ron Prattley, subtitled 'A Concise Guide to the Locomotives designed by Kirtley, Stirling and Kitson'
Booklet published by the Historical Model Railway Society in 1997, 46 pages. Booklet - c.21cm by 27cm (N5586)
Written by Ron Pratley, a noted modeller and writer on the Hull & Barnsley Railway, this booklet is a must for anyone interested in the railways of this region. It is lavishly illustrated, and many of the photographs are not previously published or reproduced to this high standard. Line drawings of all seventeen classes of locomotives operated by the Company are provided, complete with brief historical notes and tables recording full details of the 1908 classification scheme, and the subsequent renumberings and withdrawals.
From the foreword: In a book such as this photographs are de rigueur, drawings and words can tell a lot but they are no substitute for the photographic image. Photographs of the H&BR are, to say the least, somewhat rare and we are indebted to those who took time to record these images in those early years between 1885 and 1922 and later through to the final demise of H&BR locomotives in the 1950s. These photographers, whether amateur or professional, deserve to be congratulated for preserving something of the essence of the H&BR.
There are three basic sources from which photographs originate. The first were the professionally produced photographs by the locomotive builders, where, in the case of the H&BR, a set of photographs were part of the contractual arrangements for the construction of the locomotives. Secondly, the 'publicity' pictures for the railway trade press of the day. Comparative photographs of before and after rebuilding, for example, were a good excuse for an 'independent' revue of the latest developments.
The above appeared in a more formal way and, in the third group, it was the amateurs who produced the pictures in something of an avant garde style. Lineside views and location pictures of engines are the works of these devotees. One such amateur, George Gregory, was the Shed Foreman at Springhead and many of the photographs taken around the Shed are his work. He was quite innovative, often using the steps of a brakevan or some such 'handy' place to perch his camera, in place of a tripod.
During the period up to amalgamation with the NER and into the 1930s, photographic emulsions on plates and films were only sensitive to the blue and green colours of the spectrum. This orthochromatic material did not record red, and on printing this could appear as black. Sometimes a weathered black was reproduced lighter than say, a red buffer beam.
Many of the photographs, some over a hundred years old, handed down over the years have either deteriorated or maybe the quality of the print itself is doubtful. In order to get the best results, recopying is the only route and with careful reprinting many old photographs can have a new lease of life and with modern techniques in the book printing trade, images can be revived for modern day enthusiasts.
The condition of the booklet is generally excellent. The covers are clean and bright, the staple spine is intact and all pages are clean, intact, unblemished and tightly bound. There is a small price sticker on the rear side cover.