Caradon & Looe - The Canal, Railways and Mines
Michael Messenger (Twelveheads Press)
First published in 1978 and last revised in 2001, it is currently out of print but a revised and updated edition is in preparation.
This is the definitive history of the Liskeard & Looe Union Canal, the Liskeard & Caradon Railway and the Liskeard & Looe Railway and it has not been bettered for its depth of research and historical accuracy. It is also a very full history of the Caradon copper mines.
The Liskeard and Looe branch
Gerry Beale (Wild Swan Publications)
Published in 2000, this sumptuous book takes up the history of the line from 1909 when the GWR took over its operations.
The book details the development of the Liskeard and Looe branch from the time of the working agreement, through the period of GWR ownership and into the era of the nationalised railway system when the line became part of the British Railways (Western Region).
The text is based on much original research, using many company documents held in record offices and in private hands, but also leans on the recollections of the railwaymen who worked on the line in its postwar heyday. Due no doubt to its fascinating history, its unusual working practices and its location in a popular holiday area, the line was well recorded by many of the leading railway cameramen and the book is illustrated with a wealth of attractive photographs.
The book is out of print but copies can often be obtained through booksellers and online auctions.
Branch line to Looe
Vic Mitchell & Keith Smith (Middleton Press)
Part of Middleton Press’ well known series of branch line studies, this book is full of photographs charting the changing line’s history up to the mid 1990s. First published in 1998, it was last reprinted in 2015 and is available direct from the publishers and from many other outlets.
The Magic of the Liskeard to Looe Railway
By C.H.Bastin (Self-published)
Local enthusiast Colin Henry Bastin self-published a series of short books about local railways in the 80s and early 90s. Included in each is a range of snippets, including transcribed press articles and often his own observation on the railway concerned. Some of material can only be found now in his books. Another in his series “End of the Line Part 3” also includes mention of the Looe branch.
Long out of print but copies can sometimes be obtained through booksellers and online auctions.
MORE TO EXPLORE
ABOUT THE HERITAGE PROJECT
The Looe Valley Line heritage project is brought to you by the Devon & Cornwall Rail Partnership.
It was funded by the GWR Customer and Communities Improvement Fund and the Designated Community Rail Development Fund, a joint initiative of the Department for Transport and the Association of Community Rail Partnerships (now Community Rail Network).