British Rail Designed 1948-97

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PUBLISHED 10 NOVEMBER 2016

British Rail Designed 1948-97 is about the design successes, and failures, of Britain's most extensive state-sponsored industry. It is a story of people and ideas, movement and design, speed and colour. It is a comprehensive study of the crafting, operation and marketing of a national transport system, by which four steam-powered empires were transformed into a modern enterprise. Moving railway aesthetics from the consequences of engineering decisions, to an expression of the purpose and dculture of a nation, British railway design has led world design trends. It has produced an extraordinary legacy of two- and three- dimensional design icons, and is evident today in good, clear communication and product design, from the international Eurostar network to contemporary revivals of letter forms conceived in the early 1960s. With railways once again topical, as Crossrail, Crossrail 2 the HS2 network and other projects serve to develop and regenerate regions, it is timely to recognise the considerable achievement of British Rail design.

David Lawrence writes about, curates and photographs design, architecture and culture. He is the editor of Moving Metropolis: A History of London's Transport since 1800 (2015) and OMNIBUS: A Social History of the London Bus (2014); author of A Logo for London (2013), Food on the Move: the Extraordinary World of the Motorway Service Area (2010), Bright Underground Spaces (2008) and Underground Architecture (1994). David is an associate professor at a London university, and Research Fellow and Curator at the London Transport Museum.

'British Rail Designed shows us that the railways were image conscious before most of us even knew what image was. It celebrates the design heritage of British Rail, and the colour, image and style that made it a modern icon.' Pete Waterman OBE

'You don't have to be a train-spotter to become fully immersed in this book. Anyone with an eye for evocative design and graphics, and anyone with an interest in social history, can't help but get drawn in...' Wayne Hemingway MBE

'At last, the definitive account of BR's design achievements. Beautifully produced and richly informative, David Lawrence's book is at once a refreshingly different exploration of our railways and a major contribution to the visual history of Britain.' Simon Bradley, author of The Railways: Nation, Network and People

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