Special Interest Groups

The Society has a number of Special Interest groups. Each has its own area, accessed from below:

Please note that there are currently no Members Only pages in the SIG areas of the website. Any links to Members Only pages are “work in progress” and are not functional.

Air Transport

The primary aim of the Group is the exchange of information among members by the periodic despatch (about twice annually) to members of a Newsletter, Occasional Papers (written by members and others and in some cases to be regarded as possible drafts of papers for the Society’s Journal) and other written material concerning the history of aviation.  For more information contact the co-ordinator, Philip Scowcroft, via the email address: wild141@talktalk.net.

Early Railways

The ‘early railway’ is perhaps best defined by what it is not: the mainline public railway. Hence it covers all those railways from the first known, in Ancient Greece, to the advent of the modern railway from 1825 – and later, for those private or industrial lines that continued in the earlier tradition. This was a fascinating phase during which technology and practice were often fast developing and full of innovation: wooden, cast iron, and wrought iron rails; edge rails, plate rails and suspension systems; power sources of men, animals and engines.  For more information contact the co-ordinator, Andy Guy, via the email address: early.railway.group@gmail.com.

Modern Transport

This Group is intended to encourage interest in the period since 1945 across the transport modes. This is an era which, in many cases, has seen nationalisation and de-nationalisation, modernisation and increased awareness of heritage, worthy of putting on the record.  For more information contact the co-ordinator, Ray Shill, via the email address:  rayshill25@gmail.com.

Pipelines and Materials Handling

Although pipelines and materials handling do not have the immediate visual attraction of other forms of transport and are therefore a minority interest in themselves, they have had a considerable impact on the history of other transport modes by reason of the competition they have presented. Besides the work of researching their history as a subject in itself, the Group is performing a useful function in making information on intermodal competition available to those engaged in researching other modes of transport.  For more information contact the co-ordinator, Philip Scowcroft, via the email address: wild141@talktalk.net.

Railway Chronology

The Railway & Canal Historical Society’s Railway Chronology Group seeks to bring together members interested in producing databases of railway Acts, line and station opening and closing dates, station renamings, etc, with a view to eventual publication.  For more information contact the co-ordinator, E H Cheers, via the email address: rchschronology@aol.com.

Railway History Research

The purpose of the Railway History Research Group is to provide a service to members who are involved in researching railway history from the start of the first steam-hauled passenger service onwards – and to encourage those who aspire to do so – by providing a forum in which they can seek information, try out ideas and disseminate information of potential value to fellow researchers. For more information contact the co-ordinator, Andrew Jones, via the email address: andrew59jones@gmail.com.

Road Transport

The primary aim of the Group is the exchange of information among members by the periodic despatch (thrice annually) to members of a Newsletter, Occasional Papers (written by members and others, and in some cases to be regarded as possible drafts of papers for the Society’s Journal) and other written material concerning the history of roads and of road transport of all kinds.  For more information contact the co-ordinator, Philip Scowcroft, via the email address:  wild141@talktalk.net.

Waterways History Research

The aim of this Group is to foster the production of papers for the Society’s Journal and elsewhere, by assisting members engaged in researching inland waterway history, and by encouraging those who are thinking of embarking for the first time on research and writing in this field.  Docks and shipping are also covered within this Group, and members are invited to submit items in these fields too.  For more information contact the co-ordinator, Peter Cross-Rudkin, via the email address:  peterxr@tiscali.co.uk.

Tracking Railways Archives Project

In 2000 a consortium of 21 railway societies collaborated to establish TRAP. In 2000 a consortium of 21 railway societies collaborated to establish TRAP. Its initial purpose was to ensure that the Access-to-Archives project, creating an on-line catalogue of archives in England, did not ignore the needs of railway historians. Once the contribution to A2A had been completed, it was decided to invite volunteer researchers to help create an on-line database describing collections of railway archives (not detailed catalogues of individual records) for which there seemed to be little prospect of being incorporated into A2A. The former National Register of Archives (NRA) gave active support to this follow-up project, to the extent of helping with database design and hosting the TRAP website as an adjunct to its own. TRAP in that form was wound up on 30th March 2008 and allied itself to the Railway & Canal Historical Society. The project was terminated in 2016 and the database has been turned into a straightforward text-based file, the contents of which follow the link TRAP.
For more information, or with any questions on TRAP, contact Tony Miller, via the email address: dusty@widerview.co.uk