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Cosens cover

ISBN 978 0 906294 48 2 [ISBN-10: 0 906294 48 7]
176pages, 224 illustrations, 19 in full colour. Hard back. £20.00

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Cosens of Weymouth; 1918 to 1996

by Richard Clammer

The principal paddle steamer operator on the Wessex coast was Cosens of Weymouth. Fond memories abound of Monarch, Empress and Victoria, just some of their fleet of paddle steamers that plied the south coast, from Dartmouth to Brighton, and across the Channel to Cherbourg and Alderney.

But Cosens had other strengths, running a ship repair and engineering business, as well as salvage and speedboat operations, and even an ice- making plant. They were leading employers in Weymouth. During both wars the ships played a major part, and some were never to return. Changing economics and holiday habits after the second world war brought a gradual decline and the last paddle steamer, Embassy, was withdrawn in 1966.

The fascinating story is now told for the first time by someone who knew Cosens well. This book gives a vivid and detailed insight into the daily operations of the company, from after the Great War. It is drawn not just from the company's own records but from interviews with former Cosens' employees to give an authenticity and colour that records alone could not achieve. A second volume is planned, tracing Cosens' history from its origins in 1848.

The book is illustrated by a superb selection of photographs, sailing bills and ephemera, many previously unpublished and some in full colour.

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Reviews:

'It is rare that you can find a book that is perfect in every way. But with Richard Clammer's new book this statement is correct! . . . this enthralling book contains a rich collection of photographs (many in colour) which illustrate that the story of Cosens was as much about people as it was about the ships . . . The quality of design and printing of the book is superb and worth every penny of the price.' Paddle Wheels

'. . . vivid and detailed insight . . . should be regarded as the definitive history of one of the principal paddle steamer operators on England's south coast . . .' Ships Monthly

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