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Out of Stock ISBN: 978 1 8398 3019 8
Condition: Excellent
Published by: Birlinn
Author: David Spaven

Scotland's Lost Branch Lines - Where Beeching Got It Wrong

The infamous 'Beeching Axe' swept away virtually every Scottish branch line in the 1960s. Conventional wisdom viewed these losses as regrettable yet inevitable in an era of growing affluence and rising car ownership. This ground-breaking analysis of Beeching's flawed approach to closures has unearthed — from rarely or never previously referenced archive sources — strong evidence of a 'stitch-up'. In a doomed rush to eliminate the industry's financial losses, the 1963 Beeching Report ignored the scope for sensible economies and service improvements which would have allowed a significant number of axed routes to survive and prosper.

Acclaimed railway historian David Spaven traces the birth, life and eventual death of Scotland's branch lines, and dissects the controversial closure process through the unique stories of how a dozen routes lost their trains in the 1960s: the lines to Ballachulish, Ballater, Callander, Crail, Crieff, Fraserburgh, Kelso, Kilmacolm, Leven, Peebles, Peterhead and St Andrews. He concludes by exploring a potential renaissance of branch lines, propelled by concerns over road congestion, vehicle pollution and the climate emergency.

Hardback with dust jacket, 294 pages, black & white photographs