James I. C. Boyd
Boyd spent a lifetime researching and writing on narrow gauge railways. His books on narrow gauge railways in North and Mid Wales, the Isle of Man and Ireland are considered to be standard works on the subject. His books, published by The Oakwood Press since 1965, are rarely out of print, reflecting their importance to, and popularity with, railway historians and enthusiasts.
Boyd was born in 1921 into a family long connected with the Scottish textile machinery industry. His lifelong work was considerably helped by an inheritance from his family, without which much of his work could not have been done.
Retiring from the textiles industry in the late 1960s, Boyd moved to Colwall and became a Master at the Downs School. At the same time, he was appointed to look after the Downs Light Railway and started a twenty year restoration that would ultimately result in his efforts being recognised with a miniature steam locomotive bearing his name. Boyd later retired from the school, but continued to fight to preserve the railway amidst Headmasters who failed to see the historical and educational importance, and led the formation of the Downs Light Railway Trust in 1983. Boyd continued to oversee the railway up to the millennium, despite suffering a stroke in the 1990s.
- Narrow Gauge Rails to Portmadoc, Oakwood Press 1949. Although lacking the detail of later works, this is probably the best written of his books, showing a lightness of touch which he was never successfully to recapture.
- The Festiniog Railway, first edition 2 vols, Oakwood Press 1956 and 1959. Second edition, little altered, 1962. Third edition, heavily re-written, 1975, see below.
- Isle of Man Railway 1962. Subsequently expanded, see below.
- Narrow Gauge Railways in Mid-Wales 1965.
- Narrow Gauge Railway Museum (Towyn, Merioneth) 1972.
- On the Welsh Narrow Gauge (nd, but 1970s)
- Narrow Gauge Railways in South Caernarvonshire 1972. Subsequently expanded, see below.
- On the Isle of Man Narrow Gauge 1978
- Boyd, James I.C. (1975) . The Festiniog Railway 1800 - 1974; Vol. 1 - History and Route. Blandford: The Oakwood Press. ISBN 0-8536-1167-X. OCLC 2074549.
- Boyd, James I.C. (1975) . The Festiniog Railway 1800 - 1974; Vol. 2 - Locomotives and Rolling Stock; Quarries and Branches: Rebirth 1954-74. Blandford: The Oakwood Press. ISBN 0-8536-1168-8.
- Narrow Gauge Railways in North Caernarvonshire, Volume 1, The West. ISBN 0-85361-273-0 3 vols 1981-6
- Narrow Gauge Railways in North Caernarvonshire, Volume 2, The Penrhyn Quarry Railways. ISBN 0-85361-312-5
- Narrow Gauge Railways in North Caernarvonshire, Volume 3, The Dinorwic Quarry and Railways, Great Orme Tramway and other rail systems. ISBN 0-85361-328-1
- Boyd, James I.C. (1988) . Narrow Gauge Railways in South Caernarvonshire - Volume 1. Headington, Oxford: The Oakwood Press. ISBN 0-8536-1365-6. OCLC 20417464.
- Boyd, James I.C. (1989) . Narrow Gauge Railways in South Caernarvonshire - Volume 2: The Welsh Highland Railway. Headington, Oxford: The Oakwood Press. ISBN 0-8536-1383-4. OCLC 145018679.
- The Isle of Man Railway, Volume 1, Pre-1873-1904. ISBN 0-85361-444-X
- The Isle of Man Railway, Volume 2, 1905-1994. ISBN 0-85361-469-5
- The Isle of Man Railway, Volume 3, The Routes and Rolling Stock. ISBN 0-85361-479-2
- Talyllyn Railway 1988
- Schull and Skibbereen Railway. ISBN 0-85361-534-9
- Wrexham, Mold & Connah's Quay Railway. ISBN 0-85361-417-2
- Don't Stand Up In The Tunnel, The Story of the Downs Light Railway and its young Engineers 1925-2001. ISBN 1-900622-04-1
- Saga by Rail 2007
- Works by or about James I. C. Boyd in libraries (WorldCat catalog)
- Obituary in The Daily Telegraph
- Obituary and biography on the Oakwood Press