Stephen Done.

August 3rd 1968, and it was my eighth birthday. Whilst dressed in my new Batman cape, (with best friend Sean in a bright yellow Robin cape), dark, thunderclouds gathered behind our house on the outskirts of Scarborough as I declared ‘I wanted to become the driver of a steam engine.’

Only to be told that the last steam engines were departing the next day...


Perhaps that is why I took up writing about steam trains instead.


Almost 40 years later I actually managed it, spending a week driving and firing huge Polish locomotives on real service trains filled with - strangely relaxed and unconcerned - Polish commuters.


I never knew the Great Central Railway when operational but spent some teenage years in Brackley and watched the great viaduct being demolished, so I have tried to breathe life back into the large sections of the line that are now silent and overgrown by taking readers back to time when steam still ruled the rails and am a member of the Friends of the Great Central Railway.


I am a museum curator by profession and am official historian and curator of the Liverpool Football Club museum at Anfield since 1998.


I also like bird watching, gardening and walking plus railway modelling (when time and space allow) …and a good real ale!


I am happy to give readings and talks about the Inspector Vignoles Mysteries, about the period in which the books are set and their railway settings to schools, book clubs and other interested groups. Please get in touch to arrange a date and time.