Scotland still has hundreds of miles of 'dismantled railways', the term used by Ordnance Survey, and the track beds give scope for many walks. Some track beds have been 'saved' as Tarmacadam walkway/cycleway routes while others have become well-trodden local walks. The remainder range from good, to overgrown, to well-nigh impassable in walking quality. This book provides a handy guide to trackbed walks with detailed information and maps. It is enhanced by numerous black and white old railway photographs, recalling those past days, and by coloured photographs that reflect the post-Beeching changes. The integral hand-crafted maps identify the old railway lines and the sites of stations, most of which are now unrecognisable. The 'Railway Age' is summarised and describes the change from 18th century wagon ways and horse traction to the arrival of steam locomotives c.1830. The fierce rivalry that then ensued between the many competing companies as railway development proceeded at a faster pace is recounted. Although walkers may be unaware of the tangled history of the development of the railway system during the Victorian era, many will have heard of, or experienced, the drastic 1960s cuts of the Beeching axe. However, in more recent times Scotland has experienced a railway revival - principally in the Greater Glasgow area but with new stations and station re-openings elsewhere. The long awaited 30-mile Borders Railway from Edinburgh to Tweedbank, the longest domestic railway to be built in Britain for more than a century, is something on a very different scale. Early passenger numbers have exceeded expectations and towns served by the line have seen significant economic benefits. Many railway enthusiasts cling to the hope that more lines will be reinstated. Meanwhile, those walks offer a fascinating and varied selection of routes that can fill an afternoon, a day or a long weekend - an ideal opportunity to get walking!
The drastic railway closures of the 1960s led to the slow decay and re-purposing of hundreds of miles of railway infrastructure. Though these buildings and apparatus are now ghosts of their former selves, countless clues to our railway heritage still remain in the form of embankments, cuttings, tunnels, converted or tumbledown wayside buildings, and old railway furniture such as signal posts. Many disused routes are preserved in the form of cycle tracks and footpaths. This colourfully illustrated book helps you to decipher the fascinating features that remain today and to understand their original functions, demonstrating how old routes can be traced on maps, outlining their permanent stamp on the landscape, and teaching you how to form a mental picture of a line in its heyday.
Guidebook to walking Hampshire's Test Way, a 44 mile (71km) route from Inkpen Beacon to the Eling Tide Mill near Southampton Water. The walk, which is described over eight stages, takes in many of the region's natural, historical and architectural delights, from the ever famous 'Sprat and Winkle' railway to the River Test itself - a stunning example of the exceedingly rare chalk stream. Each stage (they range in length from 3 to 8.5 miles) is described clearly and concisely, and is accompanied by 1:50,000 OS mapping. Worth its weight in your backpack, the guide also includes information on the history, geology and landscape of the Test Valley, as well as practical information on accommodation and transport. Additionally, it describes 15 circular walks in the Test Valley, which vary in length from 3.75 miles (6km) to 8.5 miles (13.75km). The Test Way passes through areas of intriguing history and remarkable natural beauty. There are sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) as well as Iron Age hill forts, medieval churches, age old abbeys, relics from a long passed railway era and quaint villages brimming with thatch and flint and individual 'hostelries' to match. It is a walk well suited to history and geology enthusiasts, and certainly a must for anyone interested in the iconic Sprat and Winkle railway.
This is based on our 592-page Adventure Guide to Scotland, but it zeroes in on Edinburgh and the Lothians. Also includes and extensive introductory section on Scotland as a whole. Comprehensive background information - history, culture, geography and climate - gives you a solid knowledge of each destination and its people. Regional chapters take you on an introductory tour, with stops at museums, historic sites and local attractions. Places to stay and eat; transportation to, from and around your destination; practical concerns; tourism contacts - it''s all here! Detailed regional and town maps feature walking and driving tours. Then come the adventures - fishing, canoeing, hiking, rafting and more. Includes extensive lists of recommended outfitters, with all contact details - e-mail, website, phone number and location. The definitive guide to every aspect of Edinburgh & the Lothians - the legends, the clans, the castles and romantic hotels, the Highland games and, of course, the whiskey. This long-time Scotland resident takes us to every site you will want to see.
This volume explores the experience of everyday life in Scotland over two centuries characterised by political, religious and intellectual change and ferment. It shows how the extraordinary impinged on the ordinary and reveals people's anxieties, joys, comforts, passions, hopes and fears. It also aims to provide a measure of how the impact of change varied from place to place.The authors draw on a wide range of primary and secondary sources, including the material survivals of daily life in town and country, and on the history of government, religion, ideas, painting, literature, and architecture. As B. S. Gregory has put it, everyday history is 'an endeavour that seeks to identify and integrate everything - all relevant material, social, political, and cultural data - that permits the fullest possible reconstruction of ordinary life experiences in all their varied complexity, as they are formed and transformed.'