The Sandstone Heritage Trust has just published a second book on the world famous Sandstone Steam Railway and Heritage collection in South Africa. “The Sandstone Steam Railway… the story continues”. This 220-page hard-back coffee table book in landscape format encapsulates, in words and photographs, the Sandstone Heritage Trust collection in the vast, rich agricultural grain and cattle Landscape of South Africa’s Eastern Free State.
This new publication illustrates the grit, determination and vision of the founders to save a representative cross section of the transport history of Southern Africa. By virtue of its location this living collection complements the beauty of the area with its 3.5 million old Sandstone cliffs, lakes and snow-covered, cosmos-clad farmlands in the winter months.
The text is rich in recollections and memories of challenging expeditions to rescue artefacts throughout South Africa, Angola, Zimbabwe and Mozambique. The time consuming negotiations that typify African politics makes this book more than a catalogue of assets. Almost without exception Heritage items saved would otherwise have seen the cutting torch or been lost to pervasive rust and neglect.
The collection has contributed to South Africa’s tourist industry and community development in the local Free State area. European tour operators have brought locomotive enthusiasts and other transport buffs to experience the live, working railway on the farm by way of regular shows and open days. Huge agricultural fairs, record-breaking ploughing competitions and what has become known as the ‘Sandstone experience’ are featured in the book.
The book is a must for any Heritage enthusiast and is available online at a UK price of £29 including post and packing at here.
For the Sandstone website visit www.sandstone-estates.com.
Kingswear Castle returned to service in 2023 after the first part of a major rebuild which is designed to set her up for the next 25 years running on the River Dart. The Paddle Steamer Kingswear Castle Trust is now fund raising for the second phase of the rebuild. You can read more about the rebuilds and how you can help if you can here.