The swinging sixties, with London's Carnaby Street at its heart, was the first full decade after the war when postwar shortages and rationing no longer applied. It was a decade when according to Harold Macmillan, the population of the country had never had it so good and when the Winds of Change saw Britain's continuing retreat from Empire as colonies and protectorates across the globe were granted their independence. If society was changing, so too was the infrastructure to cater for it. The increased car ownership resulting from greater personal prosperity brought problems of congestion and declining passenger transport usage. The Beeching Report on the railway industry foreshadowed the demise of many rural and secondary lines, whilst, in London, London Transport was also facing major change. The start of the decade witnessed with rapid elimination of the city's final trolleybus routes whilst the first wholly new Underground line for more than a generation, the Victoria Line, was opened. Moreover, the decade was to be the last when London Transport's responsibilities extended significantly beyond the Metropolis; it was on 1 January 1970 that the Country Area services and vehicles were transferred to the National Bus Company and recast as London Country. In an effort to save costs, One-Person Operation was introduced and, following the classic Routemaster - the last deliveries of which occurred in the mid-1960s - LT followed the national trend towards the purchase of rear-engined double-deckers as the traditional link between LT and AEC/Park Royal disappeared. In his third volume covering London Transport decade by decade, Michael Baker examines the development of London Transport during this period of transition. Drawing upon his own collection and those of other notable photographers of the period, he paints an affectionate portrait of how LT evolved during these years, how its vehicle fleet changed, how employment and staff patterns altered and how LT coped with the changing demands placed upon it by society and by government. Alongside the author's entertaining and pertinent text, the book includes some 175 mono illustrations that portray the great variety of scenes visible on London's roads and rails during this fascinating period. Over the years, Michael Baker has established himself as one of the foremost commentators on the subject of London Transport and its history; this new addition to the Ian Allan Publishing list will be sought after by all those interested in the history of LT and by those who knew London during the period, for whom the book is an exercise in pure nostalgia.
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