MEMORIES of luxury train travel across Wiltshire will come flooding back for people who once enjoyed admiring the countryside from the comfort of first class carriages, through the pages of a new book on the subject.

Author and researcher, Martyn Pring, has looked into premium transport. He has written a book entitled Luxury Railway Travel: A Social and Business History.

Mr Pring said: “I did academic research for five years for the book. But my daughter Cara was doing her degree in marketing so I was helping her out with it and got more ideas from doing that.

“There were various inspirations for the book so ideas come to you, stories from when you’re young so my Mum telling me things. My dad was in the Navy so he spent a lot of time at sea and so my mum was very lucky to get to travel first class. She travelled all over from Bristol to Glasgow to meet him off ships.

“Travelling on a luxury service meant she was looked after. I guess this railway book is a moment in time about the industry so it was a light bulb moment really.

Mr Pring, aged 63, worked as a researcher at the department of tourism for Bournemouth University and recently in the marketing sector. He has always had a fascination for railways from a young age and has combined this with his work.

The book is the first of two volumes with the second edition due this autumn.

“I have spent the last three years writing the two books.

"I tracked the Cornish Riviera through Wiltshire to Somerset. I was looking at key destinations in the West Country. The trains going through the South West does get covered. Of course, Great Western was the second largest area for travel outside of London at that time.

“In the 1960s, there was a conservative change in travel patterns relevant because of cars being introduced.

“My father was killed in an explosion when I was a few months old so I never knew him but my Mum remarried a sailor.

“I've always enjoyed trains and as a child, I spent hours with my (step) dad looking at Blue Pullman trains at Temple Meads Station as they were the first diesel and electric train. I’ve always had a fascination with the sea and rail. This is combining my knowledge of railways, travel and tourism in a unique way."

“I know Wiltshire very well as I worked as a primary researcher for a tourism business all around the area.”

The book is available from most book stores and online.