Each volume in the 'Railways of Britain' series is based on the hugely successful and innovative two-volume atlas of the Railways of Great Britain by Colonel Michael Cobb. The individual regional titles include over 40 maps updated and revised from Cobb's original work. The maps show the railway network in terms of those lines still open, those still open for freight traffic only, those preserved and those closed completely. Alongside the railway lines, the book also includes a current road network in simplified form to allow the inter-relationship between railways and roads to be clearly identified. In addition to the mapping, each volume also includes a detailed history outlining the development of the area's railway network.The third volume in the series covers the counties of Devon and Cornwall. The history of railway development in the region stretches back to the earliest years of the railway age with the Bodmin & Wadebridge opening in 1834 and with numerous mineral lines constructed to convey the region's rich mineral resources from mines to ports. As elsewhere, however, the railway network of today, shorn of many of the duplicate routes and rural branch lines, is but a pale shadow of that which existed at the height of the railway boom, but it still forms an essential link between the region and the rest of the country and between many of the scattered communities that form much of the area.
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Robert Kershaw joined the Parachute Regiment in 1972 after graduating in History at Reading University, reaching the rank of Colonel. In between Regimental service he attended the Fuhrungsakademie - the German Staff College - at Hamburg and later spent a number of years with NATO and the Bundeswehr. He has seen active service during a number of tours of Northern Ireland, with the US VII Corps during the Gulf War and in Bosnia.
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