As steam was gradually eliminated from everyday service around the world in the second half of last century, a world-wide phenomenon took place which reflected the enormous affection in which steam railways and locomotives were held. There was a great surge of enthusiasm to preserve, restore and operate examples of these great machines for generations to come. This 5 DVD Box set is the complete series looks at both the survivors and the many preserved engines in all their glory across the continents and contains over 400 minutes of fascinating footage.
The 5 Disc Box Set features programmes on -
- The East begins in Jordan where we witness the action on the famous Hedjaz Railway. After a short visit to Syria we arrive in India, one of the last places where steam remained active in everyday service. The narrow gauge of the famous Darjeeling line are also covered and our journey moves to Nepal to see the Avonside and Hunslet engines at work before finally terminating in Sri Lanka aboard a restored 1928 built Sentinel.
Britain and Western Europe
- Britain and Western Europe features famous engines such as Flying Scotsman and Duchess of Hamilton on the main line, as well as visiting industrial survivors on the Foxfield Railway, the miniature railways at Audley End and the romantic Isle of Mull. Recall the Railway Preservation Society's May 1994 gathering in Ireland and follow the glory days of the Fleche D'or in France. Finally visit some charming old steam survivors in Finland.
North, Central & South America
- This programme begins in the U.S.A with a Frisco steam engine and a 21 car railfan excursion heading up Rolla Hill bound for St Louis. Catch steam engines working coal trails in Pennsylvania and then on to Wyoming to see the largest working steam locomotive in the world - Union Pacific's Challenger - as it heads a 7,000 ton freight up Archer Hill. In Cuba, Guatemala and El Salvador we see again the Alco, Porter and Baldwin locomotives working the sugar cane fields, and finally to Paraguay where we see how a British-built steam veterans survive as wood burning engines on a remarkable line that remains 100% steam dependent.
Eastern Europe and Africa
- Eastern Europe & Africa provides glimpses of rare mainline steam railways in Poland. The on to Turkey to recall a steam special from Kars to Adana on the Mediterranean coast. Head to South Africa where the picturesque 'Garden Route' from George to Knysna is portrayed where the line crosses the Kaimans river bridge. Next visit Zimbabwe, famous for its Garratt engines which can be seen on routes out of Bulawayo to Victoria Falls, as well as on the Nicholson line and a return trip to Plumtree. Finally its off to Botswana to see ex-South African Railways locomotives on the nickel-ore line between the mines and smelters at Selebi-Phikwe.
Far East & Australia
- The Far East and Australia shows the viewer the recently built Chinese steam locomotives that continue to play an important role in fulfilling the country's transport needs. Journey to Japan to enjoy a steam demonstration at the Kyoto roundhouse museum. On Java, one of Indonesia's main islands, witness German-built engines at work on a mountain line. Finally we travel to Australia to experience three days of intensive steam action on the broad gauge line between Melbourne and Adelaide.