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This is just a sample list of books relating to Engine Sheds - Other books are occasionally reviewed/listed in Link magazine

If members know of any books they would like to see advertised on this page please let me know on


I have very recently self published a book that I am certain will be of interest to many of your members.

It has over 220 pages with about 50,000 words, at least 150 colour photographs of trains and locomotives from 1962 to 1967, at least 150 black and white photographs from 1958 to 1967, a range of maps and diagrams and an extensive bibliography. Many of the photographs are at particular motive power depots throughout the British Isles.




It covers the history of Monument Lane Loco Shed in Birmingham, which existed from 1854 to 1967. Actually, after 1956 there were two Monument Lane sheds, as the first DMU's in Birmingham were allocated to the shed and maintained in a separate building.

 The book covers the history of the shed, the duties that fell to the depot (main line, local and freight duties) and details of the men who worked there, together with a number of annexes which include details of loco diagrams and allocations, The book also has around 100 photographs and I will be donating a complimentary copy of the book to the Society Library.

 The book costs 11.95 but I am happy to make it available to Society members at 10 plus 1.40 postage.

 Copies can be ordered directly from me, Tony Higgs, 22 Maxstoke Close, Matchborough West, Redditch B98 0EJ.

(Click image to enlarge)





For those owners of copies of the excellent two-volume publication "The Directory of British Engine Sheds and Principal Locomotive Servicing Points", the authors, Roger Griffiths and Paul Smith, have completed the 2nd Supplement with updates and additional material. This 20 page booklet is in the same format as previous publications with maps and photographs, and it is planned that this will be the final output from the authors regarding this topic. Roger, in particular, has spent a considerable amount of time in checking every temporary railhead to assess whether locomotive servicing was undertaken there, and the authors now feel that they have now covered every steam locomotive facility in Great Britain.

Supplement No. 2 is published by the Engine Shed Society and is available by post (UK) for 4.99 plus 1 P&P. Members of the ESS are entitled to 1 discount (i.e. 3.99 plus 1 P&P).  Please send a cheque made out to the Engine Shed Society to Paul Smith, 11A Brentford Road, Birmingham, B14 4DQ. Telephone and e-mail enquiries can be sent to 0121-444 8896 or respectively.


'GREAT CENTRAL - The Twilight Years' by Tony Newman. For reference, if anyone has a particular interest in WOODFORD HALSE MPD, in my book  are more than 70 photographs taken either inside the shed or around the shed yard in the period 1960-1964. The 288 page album features over 450 images in all, most of the Rugby-Woodford Halse-Aylesbury stretch of the GC.  Details of the book are found in the web site:



The Railways of Great Britain, a Historical Atlas by Colonel M.H.Cobb, FRICS, MA. ISBN 07110 3002 2 and 07110 3003 0. Measuring 34cms high by 30cms wide and weighing-in at a total of 6.5kgs, it comprises two volumes (hence the two ISBN numbers) encased in a thick cardboard jacket. Covers and jacket are coloured in emerald green with gold leaf lettering. Published by Ian Allan, it is available directly and only through Ian Allan Publishing, 4 Watling Drive, Sketchley Industrial Estate, Hinckley, Leics., LE10 3EY. Tel: 01455 254450 (email: Price 120.

Volume One has a few pages of introduction which tell us that Col. Cobb started research in 1978 and completed it in 1992. Col. Cobb pays tribute to his friend, James Colyer-Fergusson, for it was he that provided the finance for production of the work - Cobb describes the cartographic costs as "enormous". The introduction is followed by 434 pages of maps covering Penzance, north to a line roughly drawn through Kendal and Scarborough. Volume Two goes from map page 430 (to allow overlap with Volume One) through to map 646 and Thurso. These are followed by an incredible reference section which is made up of the following:

(1) Twelve pages of railway company "family trees" - in itself a work of immense interest and value.
(2) Two pages of railway companies which received Acts for opening a line but which were absorbed before those lines were opened.
(3) A page listing minor independent railway companies.
(4) A page of bibliography.
(5) Just over two pages of railway company names,
(6) Seventeen pages of railway station names.
(7) Nearly five pages of junction names.
(8) Two pages of tunnel names.
(9) Four pages covering water troughs and incline names, and an index of "Miscellaneous Items", like sidings, docks, summits, piers, etc.

Colonel Cobb was formerly a member of Her Majesty's Corps of Royal Engineers and most will know that officers of the RE were for many years responsible for the survey, compilation and publishing of the Ordnance Survey. He worked in the OS and Geographic fields of the Corps and thus had access to many unpublished maps, plans, street layouts and associated records going back beyond the birth of Britain's railways, so his base material was both unique and unimpeachable. The atlas therefore can be considered to be the very best record of its type yet produced, with little scope for improvement.

Given the above, it will be no surprise therefore, that the maps used in the work are the matchless Ordnance Survey One Inch to the Mile series. They are presented on a 1:1 scale as a neutral white background, but with all detail clearly visible in grey. Every railway line in Britain - including the Isle of Man, but excluding Northern Ireland - has been coloured-in on the maps in different shades to delineate between the various companies. Each line has its opening date marked alongside, together with the name of the building company and subsequent owning companies where appropriate. Closure dates of lines are marked also, in red. In this way the chronological growth and decline of lines across Britain's landscape can easily be traced. For engine shed enthusiasts this is priceless, because it shows where there were temporary railheads which, more often than not, were provided with some form of locomotive facility. Every station site is marked, complete with any subsequent re-naming, plus opening and closing dates. This too provides valuable information for shed enthusiasts, because where there was a succession of stations at a particular location there was often a succession of sheds and/or stabling points. Needless to say, this person has found it of immense value in identifying new sites enough to probably warrant a second Supplement to the "Directory of British Engine Sheds

Furthermore, I have had the privilege of meeting Colonel Cobb at his lovely Devonshire home to discuss his work in detail and can only comment that it engenders nothing but many superlatives! The standard of production throughout is of the highest quality, with thick, strong card being used for the pages and very heavy card covers - there are even card place markers attached with matching green ribbon. The quality reflects the price, but really this is so much more than a "book" - it is nothing less than a work of art and, if it can be afforded, it should be in the collection of any serious enthusiast of Britain's railways.      (Roger Griffiths)

The Midland Railway in Nottingham - by C J Perkins and R Padgett, published privately by ESS member Jim Perkins.
Volume 1    1839 - 1907    Buildings, Locomotives and Men (ISBN 0-9539878-0-9) 144pp 48 b&w photos. Price 16.50
Volume 2    1908 - 1947    Decades of Change (ISBN 0-9539878-1-7) 160pp 125 b&w photos. Price 12.95
Volume 3    1948 - 1999    From Steam to Diesel (ISBN 0-9539878-2-5) 130pp 188 b&w photos. Price 15.95
Available from:- Jim Perkins, 17 Rufford Road, Ruddington, Notts, NG11 6FT. e-mail 
Special Price to ESS members - 36.00 plus P&P for all three volumes
A comprehensive history of the various loco sheds owned and used by the Midland Railway in Nottingham. Details of Loco allocations, rosters, special workings, details of buildings, how the shed worked, depot and footplate staff.
Both authors served their apprenticeship at Nottingham (16A) and this set is no dry history but a true labour of love.

The Directory of British Engine Sheds and Principal Locomotive Servicing Points
Volume 1 - Southern England, the Midlands, East Anglia & Wales
by Roger Griffiths and Paul Smith. Published 1999 by Oxford Publishing Co.
ISBN 0 86093 542 6

The Directory of British Engine Sheds and Principal Locomotive Servicing Points
Volume 2 - North Midlands, North England & Scotland
by Roger Griffiths and Paul Smith. Published 2000 by Oxford Publishing Co.
ISBN 0 86093 548 5

British Steam Motive Power Depots - LMR
by Paul Bolger. Published by Ian Allan 1981
ISBN 0 7110 1019 6

British Steam Motive Power Depots - ER
by Paul Bolger. Published by Ian Allan 1982
ISBN 0 7110 1193 1

British Steam Motive Power Depots - SR
by Paul Bolger. Published by Ian Allan 1983
ISBN 0 7110 1274 1

British Steam Motive Power Depots - WR
by Paul Bolger. Published by Ian Allan 1983
ISBN 0 7110 1311 X

British Steam Motive Power Depots - ScR
by Paul Bolger. Published by Ian Allan 1983
ISBN 0 7110 1248 2

British Steam Motive Power Depots - NER
by Paul Bolger. Published by Ian Allan 1984
ISBN 0 7110 1362 4

Great Western Engine Sheds 1837 - 1947
by E Lyons & E Mountford. Published by Oxford Publishing Company 1979
ISBN 86093 019 X


Some of the listed books are now quite hard to obtain. Members, no doubt, have their favourite sources of supply and boot sales and rail fairs sometimes come up with the goods.
Two good second hand "book search" sites are and New books are available at and

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