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Keith Langston - Author

About the Author

Books by Keith Langston

British Steam Military Connections LNER Steam Locomotives & Tornado

British Steam Military Connections LNER Steam Locomotives & Tornado

Author: Keith Langston Format: Hardback Release Date: 30/11/2019

In Great Britain there existed a practice of naming steam railway locomotives. The names chosen covered many and varied subjects. However, a large number of those represented direct links with military personnel, regiments, squadrons, naval vessels, aircraft, battles and associated historic events. This publication looks specifically at the relevant steam locomotives which came into British Railway stock on 1 January 1948. Memorably, the London, Midland & Scottish Railway named an express locomotive Patriot, as a memorial engine following on from a London & North Western Railway (LNWR) tradition. That name was then applied to a complete class of locomotives. In addition, a large number of the company's Jubilee class locomotives were given names with a military connection, as were a small number of Black Five class engines. Famously the majority of the much-admired Royal Scot class of engines carried names associated with the military in general and regimental names in particular. The Stanier 8F class, often referred to as The Engines of War were unnamed by the LMS. However, one of the class honoured the memory of a Victoria Cross holder, whilst the locomotive was in the UK and under the ownership of the War Department. Many of the nameplates were adorned with ornate crests and badges. Long after the demise of mainline steam, rescued nameplates are still much sort after collectors' items, which when offered for sale command high prices. This generously illustrated publication highlights the relevant steam locomotives at work around the railway network and explains the origins and social history surrounding their military names.

British Steam Military Connections London, Midland and Scottish Railway Steam Locomotives

British Steam Military Connections London, Midland and Scottish Railway Steam Locomotives

Author: Keith Langston Format: Hardback Release Date: 10/06/2019

In Great Britain there existed a practice of naming steam railway locomotives. The names chosen covered many and varied subjects, however a large number of those represented direct links with military personnel, regiments, squadrons, naval vessels, aircraft, battles and associated historic events. Memorably the Southern Railway (SR) created a Battle of Britain class of Light Pacific locomotives, which were named in recognition of Battle of Britain squadrons, airfields, aircraft and personnel. The Great Western Railway (GWR) re-named some of its express passenger Castle Class engines after Second World War aircraft. Names were displayed in varying styles on both sides of the locomotives, additionally some nameplates were adorned with ornate crests and badges. Long after the demise of mainline steam, rescued nameplates are still much sort after collectors' items, which when offered for sale command high prices. This generously illustrated publication highlights the relevant steam locomotives at work and explains the origins of the military names.

Stanier: Black Five Locomotives

Stanier: Black Five Locomotives

Author: Keith Langston Format: Hardback Release Date: 15/08/2018

It is possible that in the history of British steam locomotives no class of engine was ever more universally popular than the Stanier '5MT' 4-6-0 class, which were generally referred to as 'Black Fives'. This informative book includes numerous images of the class at work, many of which are published for the first time. Introduced by the London Midland & Scottish Railway (LMS) in 1934 the building of the 842-strong class was shared between the locomotive works at Crewe, Horwich and Derby and also by the private builders Armstrong Whitworth Ltd. and Vulcan Foundry Ltd. With the exception of a pause in production during the war time years 'Black Five' locomotives continued to be built until May 1951, when the last example was out-shopped from BR Horwich Works. Only four examples of the class were named, but a fifth locomotive was allocated a name which it reportedly never carried. They were often referred to as the finest mixed-traffic locomotives ever to run in Britain. William Arthur Stanier joined the LMS in 1932 having previously served the Great Western Railway (GWR) at Swindon Works, doubtless his LMS 2-cylinder tapered boiler 'Class 5' 4-6-0 design reflected his Swindon experiences. This highly efficient and reliable general-purpose design (in several variants) could generally be seen at work over all of the former LMS network, from Thurso in the north of Scotland to Bournemouth (Somerset & Dorset Joint Railway) in the south of England. They became the ultimate go everywhere steam locomotives, working all manner of trains from slow goods to express passenger services. In 1967 just prior to the end of steam, British Railways remarkably listed 151 Stanier 'Black Fives' as 'serviceable' locomotives. A total of 18 Stanier 'Black Five' locomotives survived into preservation, with the majority of those having been returned to steam.

British Steam Military Connections Southern Railway, Great Western Railway and British Railways - Steam Locomotives

British Steam Military Connections Southern Railway, Great Western Railway and British Railways - Steam Locomotives

Author: Keith Langston Format: Hardback Release Date: 01/10/2017

In Great Britain there existed a practice of naming steam locomotives. The names chosen covered many and varied subjects, however a large number of those represented direct links with military personnel, regiments, squadrons, naval vessels, aircraft, battles and associated historic events. For example, all but one member of the famous 'Royal Scot' class were named in honour of British regiments. Also the Southern Railway created a 'Battle of Britain' class of locomotives, which were named in recognition of Battle of Britain squadrons, airfields, aircraft and personnel. In addition, the Great Western Railway re-named some of its engines after Second World War aircraft. The tradition has continued into modern times as the newly built 'A1' class locomotive is named 'Tornado' in recognition of the jet fighter aircraft of the same name. This generously illustrated publication highlights the relevant steam locomotives and additionally examines the origin of the military names.

British Steam: GWR Collett Castle Class

British Steam: GWR Collett Castle Class

Author: Keith Langston Format: Hardback Release Date: 17/04/2015

The 'Castle' class 4-6-0 locomotives designed by Charles Collett and built at Swindon Works were the principal passenger locomotives of the Great Western Railway. The 4-cylinder locomotives were built in batches between 1923 and 1950, the later examples being constructed after nationalisation by British Railways. In total 171 engines of the class were built and they were originally to be seen at work all over the Great Western Railway network, and later working on the Western Region of British Railways. The highly successful class could be described as a GWR work in progress, because further development took place over almost all of the locomotives working lives. In addition to inspiring other locomotive designers the 'Castle' class engines were proved to be capable of outstanding performances, and when introduced were rightly described as being 'Britain's most powerful passenger locomotives'. Some of the 'Castles' survived in service for over 40 years, and individually clocked up just a little short of 2 million miles in traffic.In this book, Keith Langston provides a definitive chronological history of the iconic class together with archive photographic records of each GWR 'Castle' locomotive. Many of the 300 plus images are published for the first time. In addition background information on the origin of the names the engines carried, including details of the many name changes which took place, are also included. The extra anecdotal information adds a fascinating glimpse of social history. Collett CASTLE Class is a lavishly illustrated factual reference book which will delight steam railway enthusiasts in general and in particular those with a love of all things Great Western!

Language Planning and National Identity in Croatia

Language Planning and National Identity in Croatia

Author: Keith Langston, Anita Peti-Stantic Format: Hardback Release Date: 19/09/2014

Following the collapse of the former Yugoslavia, Croatian was declared to be a separate language, distinct from Serbian, and linguistic issues became highly politicized. This book examines the changing status and norms of the Croatian language and its relationship to Croatian national identity, focusing on the period after Croatian independence.

Scottish Steam: A Celebration

Scottish Steam: A Celebration

Author: Keith Langston, David Anderson Format: Hardback Release Date: 25/07/2014

This collection of images chronicle steam railways in Scotland, generally during the British Railways era, and particularly during the last complete decade of steam between 1955 and 1965. The photographs (all taken well before the digital age) have been especially selected to show the wide variety of Scottish based steam locomotive types at work and on shed at locations throughout Scotland, which vary from inner city to country branch line. David Anderson's black and white images are a truly remarkable record of the age and they are complemented by carefully selected additional images by other notable photograhers and accompanied by appropriate words supplied by railway author Keith Langston.

Language Planning and National Identity in Croatia

Language Planning and National Identity in Croatia

Author: Keith Langston, Anita Peti-Stantic Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/01/2014

Following the collapse of the former Yugoslavia, Croatian was declared to be a separate language, distinct from Serbian, and linguistic issues became highly politicized. This book examines the changing status and norms of the Croatian language and its relationship to Croatian national identity, focusing on the period after Croatian independence.

British Steam- BR Standard Locomotives

British Steam- BR Standard Locomotives

Author: Keith Langston Format: Hardback Release Date: 15/03/2012

After WWII the existing railway companies were all put into the control of the newly formed British Transport Commision and that government organisation spawned British Railways, which came into being on 1st January 1948. The railway infrastructure had suffered badly during the war years and most of the steam locomotives were 'tired' and badly maintained and or life expired. Although the management of British Railways was already planning to replace steam power with diesel and electric engines/units they still took a decission to build more steam locomotives (as a stop gap). Some 999 (yes just 1 short) Standard locomotives were built in 12 classes ranging from super powerful express and freight engine to suburban tank locomotives. The locomotives were mainly in good order when the order came in 1968 to end steam, some only 8 years old.There still exists a fleet of 46 preserved Standards of which 75% are in working order in and around the UKs preserved railways, furthermore 3 new build standard locomotives are proposed. Steam fans who were around in the 1960s all remember the 'Standards'.

British Steam Patriots: Celebrating the New National Memorial Locomotive

British Steam Patriots: Celebrating the New National Memorial Locomotive

Author: Keith Langston Format: Hardback Release Date: 16/02/2012

Following the success of the first two rebuilt 'Claughton' class engines, the London Midland & Scottish Railway (LMS) in 1932 embarked upon a building programme of fifty more 'Patriot' class 5XP locomotives. The new 4-6-0 locomotives were at first referred to as 'Baby Scots', until officially named the 'Patriot' class in 1937. Two batches of the new 3 cylinder engines were built simultaneously, forty at Crewe and ten at Derby. In 1948 British Railways took all fifty-two 'Patriot' class engines into stock and subsequently eighteen of the class were rebuilt as '7P' locomotives. Although successful in traffic and popular with engine crews and enthusiasts alike, no example of these trains survived into preservation. This definitive work looks at the details associated with each member of the class and archive images of all fifty-two locomotives are featured. In addition to looking back this comprehensively researched and highly informative account of the LMS 'Patriot' class also details the plan to build the 53rd member of the class, to be known as locomotive No 45551 THE UNKNOWN WARRIOR.

Fred Dibnah - A Tribute

Fred Dibnah - A Tribute

Author: Keith Langston Format: Hardback Release Date: 17/09/2009

Mid-Cheshire based heritage transportation specialist photographer and feature writer Keith Langston travelled extensively with Fred Dibnah during the filming of his last TV series, 'Made in Britain.' Following Fred's untimely death, Keith embarked upon the creation of a book, drawing not only on his experiences with the Bolton born steeplejack and TV presenter, but in addition talking to a representative cross section of those persons who numbered themselves amongst Fred's many friends. Fred became a high profile media personality and the fame which accompanied that status never affected him, or in any way changed his down to earth demeanour. He will be remembered not only for his many practical achievements, but also for encouraging thousands of others to care about our industrial heritage. The steam bug infected Fred at a very early age possibly following his illicit visits to his father's place of work, a bleach factory. Encouraged by one of his ex teachers Fred started what he described as 'a steeplejack business'. When he turned to presenting his own programmes his blunt, no nonsense style made a welcome change from the so called television professionals. His genius lay in being able to communicate with the audience in simple, direct, colloquial English.