Reference sources - 2: Operating the line

Note: This page lists sources that only relate only to operating the line. Additional relevant material is also listed in the 'General Reference' section.

Online resources

Printed publications

Hundreds of books and articles about the Settle-Carlisle Railway have been published over the decades. The following have been identified as being particularly useful as they contain significant quantities of original, well-researched material (i.e. text, plans, historic photographs, etc). Many of the books listed below are out of print, although they do occassionally appear on the second-hand market. Some of those that are still in print may be available from FoSCL's online shop: for a list of the titles currently in stock, see:


  • Cumbrian Railways Association, The: “The Midland’s Settle & Carlisle Distance Diagrams”, The Cumbrian Railways Association (1992).
  • Fawcett, Dick: "Ganger, Guard and Signalman: Working Memories of the Settle and Carlisle", Bradford Barton (1981).
  • Hall, Stanley: "BR signalling handbook", Ian Allan Ltd (1992).
  • Mitchell, W.R: “Life on the Settle-Carlisle Railway: anecdotes collected from railwaymen and their families”, Dalesman (1984).
  • Mitchell, W.R: “Men of the Settle-Carlisle - railwaymen talk to W.R. Mitchell”, Dalesman (1985).
  • Mitchell, W R & Fox, Peter: “Locomotives seen on the Settle-Carlisle, Castleberg (1992).
  • Swift, John: “British Railways Layout Plans of the 1950s - Volume 12: Carlisle to Leeds and associated branches and joint lines”, Signalling Record Society Publications (1999)

The National Archive collection at Kew

This repository holds an enormous quanity of primary source material relating to the management and operation of the railway betwen Hellifield and Carlisle, including Parliamentary records, plans, drawings and railway company minutes (including those for Board meetings and the various Committees such as Accident, Audit, Chairman's, Finance, Law, Locomotive, Miscellaneous, Parliamentary, Stores, Traffic and Way & Works). Unfortunately, very few of the relevant records are available for viewing online. A comprehensive and methodical search of the online catalogue will be an essential starting point for any specific enquiry, but the following extracts from the catalogue will provide an good indication of the breadth and depth of the available material:

Reference: RAIL 491 - Midland Railway Company: Records

Reference: RAIL 1015 - London, Midland and Scottish Railway Collection

Reference: RAIL 421 - London, Midland and Scottish Railway Company: Miscellaneous Books and Records

Reference: RAIL 432 - London, Midland and Scottish Railway Company: Passenger and Goods Train Notices

Reference: RAIL 426 - London, Midland and Scottish Railway Company: Staff Records

For further information about the National Archive Collection and / or to search the online catalogue, see:

Series Links

The list of potentially useful / interesting reference sources is now far too long for a single page, so it has been split into five separate pages - one for each of the following sections:

  1. Building the line
  2. Operating the line
  3. Historic Structures
  4. Conservation & Archaeology
  5. General Reference

The links above will enable you to jump directly to the relevant section.


This list of reference sources was compiled by Mark R. Harvey. (© Mark R. Harvey, all rights reserved.)