While I was waiting for a book to come up from the stack in Sheffield Reference Library, I came across a reproduction of the first issue of Railway Magazine, a periodical that continues to serve industry professionals, enthusiasts and general-interest readers: http://www.railwaymagazine.co.uk.
In June 1897 the dominant rail news was the construction of the Great Central Railway, then burrowing under Lords Cricket Ground on the approach to its new terminus at London Marylebone.
The lead interview, however, was with Mr Joseph Loftus Wilkinson, the General Manager of the Great Western Railway, who was profiled because the GWR prided itself as the “Royal Railway”, and was about to unveil a new Royal Train in time for Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee.
The magazine duly included a detailed description of the new royal carriages and locomotives, noting that the Queen’s original saloon had been meticulously incorporated into the new coachwork without any alteration whatsoever: it was the only part of the new train that remained oil-lit.
The Chief Mechanical Engineer, William Dean, intimated to the reporter that though Her Majesty insisted on a speed limit of 40mph for her travels, she sometimes unwittingly approached nearer sixty. Presumably she was not expected to read the Railway Magazine.
Mr Wilkinson, in what nowadays would be seen as undisguised PR, remarked that at the Great Western “we firmly believe in speed. In these high-pressure days everybody is in a hurry.”