Wartime Rails 1918 & 1943-1950

Code: CM001
£0.00 £19.95
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This DVD contains extraordinary films shot in Europe during both World Wars.

It starts off in mind-blowing form with around 15 minutes of very high quality footage of 2 foot gauge lines supplying the American troops at the Front during the final summer of World War 1.

Included are shots of Baldwin 2-6-2s, and petro-mechanical locomotives, shunting, and running up the main line; just as you think this must be a training film shot long after the war, you pass along a very definitely French village street.

Permanent way works, including track panel replacement are demonstrated.

Moving on to World War II, the first sequence was shot in occupied Lithuania by a high-ranking Reichsbahn official, and shows a trial train being run, and the rescue of a sabotaged 2-8-0.

The subsequent films were all shot by two men serving with American Railway Operating Batallions - the first showing the restoration of a locomotive on the strategic Bouches du Rhône system, with it and a USATC 0-6-0 tank loco subsequently moving much needed oil-wagons.

Moving north we see USATC locomotives being readied at Paris-Batignolles shed, alongside French locomotives, and a mix of French and Allied crew.

Both these sequences were shot in 1945, as was the next one, covering a journey by troop train from Marseilles to Mannheim.

In France a 240P is crossed, but in Germany the considerable war damage is very apparent, and most of the trains are being operated by Allied crew using either German steam locomotives, or USATC Whitcomb diesels.

It is possible this sequence was shot during the final weeks of the war, as the Allies closed in on Berlin.

The final section was filmed during 1950, and shows the very last of the Trümmerbahnen, or 'Rubble Railways' at work in Nurnberg, and removing the wartime rubble on lines laid through the streets out into the country, where it forms an artificial hill visible to this day.

Produced by - Camden Miniature Steam Services
Running time - 55 Minutes
Black and white and colour film
English commentary
DVD only

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