Bradshaw’s Handbook – A Facsimile of the Famous Guide

OK, this post is a bit against my interest seeing that the bulk of my traffic comes from fans of Michael Portillo’s Great British Railway Journeys who come here for where to download a PDF of the guidebook used by Mr. Portillo (Michael?).

Anyway, I was looking at the Series DVD and debating whether to spring for Series 2 at 27 quid (ouch!). While my first thought is to spring for it given that I get loads of traffic from fans of the show. That price is still a bit of a bite with the state of the economy–maybe when I feel much more flush. I will admit to putting it into my basket.

Anyway, it turns out that my other question:

Why doesn’t someone come out with a good facsimile of the Guide used in the show?

After all, the guide is next to impossible to find.

In fact, I have been tempted to say that I completely trust Michael Portillo given that he is walking around with an incredibly rare book. In fact, the rarity of the book makes me think that Michael Portillo has the bravery of an SAS (SBS?) trooper since I’d hate to think what length a crazed anorak would go to for a copy of that guide!

Seriously, walking around with something which is rarer than a first folio Shakespeare takes serious bottle.

But, Bradshaw and railway fans rejoice, for there is a really good facsimile out there for you to own. The nice bit is that the price is only £5 at Amazon!

I can see these going like hotcakes

Actually, there are a couple of copies of this out there. The one I mention and another which sells for £21.94. Since I’ve downloaded the PDF version, the more expensive one seems out of my league.

And I’m not going to debate the merits of both versions since there are enough reviews on Amazon which get into that.

Actually, I won’t, but Robert Humm, the bookseller who sold Mr. Portillo the original book did make a comment about the facsimiles:

So much for originals. Now for the good news : not one but two reprints of the Portillo set have been produced and both are on offer in our New Books section. You can use the Search Box to find them quickly by entering the reference codes.

Reference : A2855 . Title : Bradshaw’s Guide. Hand Book 1. 2. 3. 4. A complete year set of the four regional parts for 1866. Paperback, with an enlarged page size for easier reading. £24.95

Reference : A2893 . Cover title : Bradshaw’s Hand Book 1. 2. 3. 4. (from title page : Bradshaw’s Descriptive Railway Hand-Book Of Great Britain And Ireland.) A reprint of the actual volume used on the TV programmes. £9.99

So, there are two choices for where to get a facsimile of this book. Or you can download a copy for free from the hathi trust site I mention in my post.

Give Mr. Humm the business since you can say you bought your Bradshaw’s Guide from the same source who sold it to Michael Portillo.

No one need know that you have a facsimile!

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