The Ulster Transport Authority in Colour
|Publisher||Colourpoint Books, Colourpoint House, Jubilee Business Park, 21 Jubilee Road, Newtownards, Co. Down, BT23 4YH.|
The UTA existed between 1948 and 1967, about the time that colour photography was coming into the public arena. The author has sourced colour photographs of the UTA in operation, most of which have not been published previously and for this, he is to be commended. From an IH perspective, the book starts off poor, dealing as it does with locomotives and buses, however, it improves as the book progresses and the later chapters contain photographs with a lot of IH interest to commend themselves to the IH interested reader.
Interesting images from an IH perspective include:
Helen's Bay signal cabin (the station building here is well known and extant - not so the signal cabin)
Larne narrow gauge station
Mixed gauge (3'0"/5'3")track at Larne
Upperlands station on the erstwhile Derry Central Railway
Portrush station with an overall roof
The coaling plant at York Road railway works
An entire chapter on the operation of the Spoil trains in the mid 1960s is also included. For the uninitiated, the UTA won a large contract to transport spoil from Magheramorne Quarry, near Larne, to an area of land reclaimation beside the railway between Greencastle and Fortwilliam. These trains ran until 1970.
The author brings to the light the former existence of "walking permits" which were issued by the railway company to allow enthusiasts track side access to obtain proper photographs. As an idea, their time is now and their abolition was a sop to the Health & Safety nonsense that now pervades every level of society with negative consequences.
Overall, the balance between coverage of IH and other matters is reasonable and I would recommend this publication. Colourpoint have delivered another quality publication.
Days Hotel Belfast - located in a lovely area of Belfast where the Union Jack flies from every lamppost and the kerbstones are painted blue white and red.
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