British Railways' Modernisation Plan of the 1950s started, sensibly, with small orders of a variety of diesel locomotives for different purposes from a range of manufacturers including its own workshops at Swindon and Derby. This was the Pilot Scheme, and the idea was to analyse the reliability and performance of these 174 locomotives of fourteen types in service before placing larger orders. Unfortunately, in its haste to eradicate steam traction, the railway then ordered large quantities of many of these designs before they had been thoroughly tested, which resulted in failures, early withdrawals and even the re-equipping of one large class with new engines at great expense and inconvenience. Some of the designs (such as some of the Class 20s and 26s), however, were ultimately successful and were perpetuated, lasting in service until the 1990s in some cases. The railway itself was not fully prepared for its expensive new toys, and the new diesels had to share facilities with steam locomotives, not an ideal environment for such temperamental machines. This book has come about following the success of a Flickr group I started showcasing the work of many railway photographers, and the photos included are used with their permission. They cover the chequered career of the Pilot Scheme Diesels from the 1950s to their present-day life in preservation. All profits from the sale of this book will be divided equally between the group restoring D5705 to working order and the group who are creating the eleventh 'Baby Deltic', D5910, at Barrow Hill.
Product code: BBBOI
Publisher: Amberley Publishing
Dimensions: 16.7cm x 23.4cm
Publish date: 15/05/2017
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