We have recently received the very welcome news that Lord Dear and Timothy West CBE have consented to become Patrons of the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway Development Foundation Campaign joining Lord Faulkner, Sir Martin Harris and Lord Wemyss.
He takes an active and regular part in the business of the House of Lords, speaking from the cross benches on home affairs, criminal justice, and rural affairs. Lord Dear is a life-long and committed steam enthusiast who on accepting the invitation to be a Patron of the Development Campaign said “I am delighted to lend my support to this campaign as Patron; railways have been an interest of mine for many years. The remarkable achievements of the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway are testament to the dedication and commitment of the hundreds of volunteers and supporters who have worked so tirelessly and given so much of their time and skills for more than 30 years and I am keen to help the GWR turn its ambitious development plans into reality”.
Book signing at the Steam GalaLord Faulkner and Chris Austin will be at Toddington on the Saturday of the Gala signing copies of their new book “Holding the Line”.
The authors – both men with long backgrounds in the rail industry - show that in Beeching, Marples found a man who as Chairman of the British Railways Board would draw the conclusion that a widespread closure programme was necessary. Drawing upon a wide range of documents, including cabinet papers, Holding the Line is an explosive account of how close the railway industry came to being eviscerated and how the dangers of 'closure by stealth' still exist in the contemporary age. This book will appeal to lovers of politics as much as railways, with its numerous extracts from Hansard and study of the lobbying tactics employed by British Rail that ultimately saved them.