Early publications – An explanation
The Group currently issues a Journal, which is a full colour publication normally of 52 pages, and a Newsletter, which is a black and white publication usually of only a few pages. The Journal contains articles about the North British Railway and its succsessors, while the Newsletter gives information about group activities and matters of interest. However that format was not used in the early days of the group.
The first few publications listed as ‘Journals’ in the Journal index were not in fact published with that title. The name ‘Journal’ was used from issue 19 onwards. An outline of the early issues is set out below.
The links on the List of Journals page show the front cover of each issue.
Issue 0, March 1978
This is the first communication to members, but it is really the Minutes of the initial meeting held on 11 March 1978 and has therefore not been counted as a Newsletter. It does not say ‘Newsletter’ on the first page. This issue is not included in the Journal index.
Issue 1, July 1978
‘Interim Newsletter 2’ - Although marked as number 2, we consider this to be the first Newsletter and the embryo of our current Journal. It is, of course, the second communication to members. It does not contain any news as such, but instead, reports on the first meeting of the Committee, gives notice of the next member’s meeting and includes a copy of the draft constitution.
Issue 2, November 1978
This issue shows ‘Newsletter’ on front page and no number. Counting back from the first Newsletter to receive a number (no. 5 – see below), we consider this to be Newsletter number 2.
Issue 3, January 1979
This shows ‘Newsletter January 1979’ and the number and is just one page.
Issue 4, February / March 1979
‘Newsletter February/March 1979’ – no number, but 6 pages.
Issue 5, July 1979
‘Newsletter No. 5, July 1979’ – this is the first to show a number.
Issue 6, October 1979
‘Newsletter No.6, October 1979’
Issue 7, February 1980
‘Newsletter No. 7, February 1980’
Issue 8, May 1980
‘North British Railway Study Group Newsletter – May 1980 Issue No. 8’. This is the first newsletter with a front cover and cover photo.
Issue 9, September 1980 – Issue 18, December 1983
(Please see the List of Journals page for details of publication dates.)
These issues were called ‘Newsletters’ but were in fact substantial publications, typically of 40 pages, with content principally consisting of articles about the North British Railway rather than group matters. The change to the title ‘Journal’ with issue 19 was not accompanied by any change to the format.
The Group also issued a ‘News Bulletin’ in October 1980 and this was really the embryo of our current Newsletter. These early ‘Bulletins’ were not numbered. They are believed to have been issued as follows (the numbers may be incorrect):
- October 1980: Bulletin no. 1
- February 1981: Bulletin no. 2
- April 1981: Bulletin no. 3
- September 1981: Bulletin no. 4 – after this one, there is a gap. It appears that none were issued between September 1981 and February 1989.
- February 1989: Bulletin no. 5 – after this there is a gap until 1996.
- September 1996: The first of the new style ‘Newsletters’ under Archie Noble's editorship was issued. This one was numbered 1, but all subsequent issues took the number of the Journal which they accompanied, so the next issue was numbered 65.
The Newsletters issued after no.18 in December 1983 are not included in the Journal index, as they contain only matters relating to the group.