When I first spotted this lovely wee book online it seemed to be an early road map, but it’s also a fabulous collection of useless information giving insight into travelling habits of the mid 20th century.

For example:

  • railway rates for travelling with motorbikes and bicycles
  • locations of milestones
  • lamp-lighting tables

and of course, there are the contours, linear diagrams of the road altitude profiles. The contents of the book suggests the growing importance of cycling and and motoring holidays.

My book is the 19th edition, but there’s no date except for a pencil inscription inside saying 1944 (although I’ve also discovered an earlier edition from 1898 online).

And it’s not shy in its opinions:

The Coal and Iron District, of which Airdrie is the centre, is the least attractive part of the country