The Magazine of Lenton Local History Society

Local Publication

Both Sides of the Fire by David L. Thompson


Price £12.99 (including p&p) direct from the Author


From the earliest times, 'fire' has always fascinated the human race, its potency to sustain life, as well as destroy it, being quickly recognised.

In his exciting book, author David Thompson describes his personal recollections from 'Both Sides of the Fire', detailing the positive aspects of working with fire while working as a fireman on steam locomotives during the British Railways era and from the negative side while working as a fireman for the Nottinghamshire Fire Brigade.

With the demise of steam traction in Britain in the mid-1960s, the author describes in detail the final days of steam working on Britain's railways and the less exciting change-over to diesel haulage.

Realising that the future of Britain's railways was in doubt, the author then decided on a change of career, thus experiencing the more negative aspects of working with fire, including loss of life, while working as a 'retained' (volunteer) and then full-time fireman.

Finally, on retirement from the Fire Brigade, the author found himself much in much demand, once again driving steam locomotives on Britain's 'preserved' or heritage railways.

The book is highly recommended, the well written text and illustrations from the author's own collection providing the reader with both a serious and light-hearted look at times past and present from 'Both Sides of the Fire'.

David Leslie Thompson was born in the City of Nottingham in 1944, the middle son of three brothers who all worked on the footplate of steam locomotives at Toton, near Nottingham. He then left the railway to work in the Fire Department of Stanton Ironworks, near Ilkeston, Derbyshire, before joining Nottinghamshire Fire Service, serving first at West Bridgford. Leaving the Fire Service after 31 years service, he then started to work as a part time, self-employed consultant. The author lives at Sandiacre, Nottingham.


Published: January 2007
Size: 148mm x 210mm (Portrait)
Illustrations: 56
Pages: 128pp
ISBN: 1-900467-33-X
Imprint: Finial Publishing

For more information please contact:
David L. Thompson, 4 Charnwood Avenue, Sandiacre, Nottingham NG10 5HD Tel. 0115 8540464

Mobile 07840 139098
email david.thompson1187@ntlworld.com