For enthusiasts and researchers of the Great Eastern Railway

RH058 Facts about Britain's Railways 1943

NEW FEBRUARY 2018. This is the 1943 edition of the series of annual booklets giving facts about the railways of Britain, as in 1936 (file RH056) and 1942 (file RH057). This time, however, there was a major development.  Instead of a small pocket booklet it suddenly expanded into a much larger format; the 40 or so pages increased to 64, and it was lavishly illustrated with quality black-and-white photographs.

This prompts two questions. The first is why? In the middle of a war, why was it suddenly deemed necessary to spend time and money on presenting the railways to the general public like this?  The second is how?  Paper was so scarce at the time that newspapers were usually one sheet folded to make four pages, and you could only buy yourself a fish and chip supper if you took your own piece of newspaper to wrap it in! The limited number of magazines that were produced were all of thin and cheap paper. This 1943 edition of 'Facts about British Railways in Wartime' was printed on quite thick semi-gloss paper of a reasonable quality.  (The 1944 edition - file RH031 - actually expanded further to 72 pages with a coloured centre spread, and the 1945 one - file RH054 - fully maintained the standard).

However did they get permission to use such valuable resources?  One wonders if the order came from quite high in government for some reason. It is difficult to see how it might be considered an important factor in maintaining public morale, but it is equally difficult to come up with any other compelling reason. There is no trace of any corresponding production in 1946 or 1947.

The topics this time included wartime traffics, central wagon control, travel restrictions, the staggering of working hours, awards for gallantry and much more.

The file is word-searchable and has bookmarks to the main sections. It will be available to download as soon as payment has been made. You go to your account and click on ‘Downloads’. New customers create an account as they place their order.

File
Pages 68
File Size (MB) 12.1

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