A nationally known writer and reporter of the heritage steam and railway scene in Britain and Ireland.
For the last 10 years Cliff has been the steam and heritage writer for the top selling monthly rail title, The Railway Magazine. Prior to this he was Heritage Railways’ News Editor for the now-defunct magazine Railway World.
His photographic and written work has also appeared on a freelance basis in a wide range of other magazines encompassing railways, both model and full size, and other heritage topics ranging from coal mines to steam pumping engines.
In addition to his critically acclaimed book Quarry Hunslets of North Wales which has been referred to as a classic work with the first print run selling out within months of publication, other railway books researched, written and illustrated by Cliff include The Narrow Gauge in Britain and Ireland (a pictorial and written introduction to the narrow gauge lines in these islands), The Whipsnade and Umfolozi Railway and The Great Whipsnade Railway (covering the fascinating history of that narrow gauge line for the first time) and Railway Moods – The Ffestiniog Railway. He has also written the only comprehensive history of the Bala Lake Railway, a book currently awaiting publication.
Not content with ‘simply’ reporting and photographing steam railways, Cliff Thomas is the founding Chairman of the Greensand Railway Museum Trust, owners of WDLR Baldwin 4-6-0T No 778 which was restored from dereliction to steam with the assistance of a Heritage Lottery Fund grant and for many years been a Director of the Leighton Buzzard Narrow Gauge Railway.
He is also an active modeller of narrow gauge railways and equipment with a garden railway as well as indoor layouts.