Denis Griffiths

As noted on other pages the creation of a separate page may not mean that the author is particularly good, and this is certainly the case with Griffiths. He was an marine engineer, but a marine one. Although many references are cited in the book on LMS engineers, these may not be completely accurate and it is difficult to verify these in the sandy bibliographical wasteland of Norfolk where the Millenium Library was really intended for the cultivation of turnips.

Locomotive engineers of the GWR. Wellingborough: Patrick Stephens. 1987 [Ottley 17990]. 184pp,
Nigel Travena (Backtrack 2-46) is highly critical: "With such a plethora of material on the GWR in print, it takes a brave author to claim to offer anything new. Indeed, in his introduction to this book on Swindon engineering practice, Denis Griffiths admits that "some repetition of information already available will have to be made" and almost all of his footnotes refer to published sources, many of them of recent origin. Nevertheless, the book's theme is to usefully draw together the contributions of the engineers, (Brunel, Gooch, Armstrong, Dean, Churchward, Collett and Hawksworth), their chain of command, design and engineering techniques, testing and innovation. The chapters on locomotives, inevitably, follow well-worn paths and there are some notable omissions, but those on carriages and wagons (also the responsibility of the GW CMEs) contain less familiar information. There are numerous diagrams; the loco drawings appear to have been chosen at random and are not to a common scale but those illustrating engineering details are useful. The author's style is readable and informative (although it is unlikely to "enthral any railway enthusiast" as the publisher's blurb rather pretentiously claims) and his text is by far the best part of this book. Unfortunately, an effort to turn this into an expensive illustrated history has gone astray, principally because the photographs are too often badly chosen, of mediocre quality and poorly reproduced on semi-matt paper.
Locomotive engineers of the L.M.S. and its major constituent companies. Sparkford: Patrick Stephens. 1991 [Ottley 18512]. 184pp.
Widely available secondhand/remaindered at daft prices. Needless to say not available in Norfolk Rural Library. Where material is cited, this is often in an eccentric manner: part numbers are given as volume numbers in some cases. Titles are given cavalier treatment. Suspect that there are some errors in volume numbers cited, but difficult to verify in bibliographical wilderness. Copy inspected came from March.