These brochures were issued by the Associated British and Irish Railways, a joint marketing organisation that had its origins with the LMSR, joined by the LNER and SR, in 1934 and to whom would be added the GWR and GSR (I) in 1935. They issued folders, primarily for the US and North American markets, showing the utility of the railways for tourists and visitors travelling across the Atlantic and the publications echo the styles of the various main line railway’s own annual editions of similar publicity folders.
The 1939 series have several examples of these attractive photo/art montage covers, signed “M” – Reginald Mayes. They would sadly be the last such brochures issued as with the outbreak of war later in 1939 such trans-Atlantic travel became almost impossible. In post-war years by the time marketing became more active the nationalised British Railways had taken over in 1948 and interestingly used many of the same office and agency locations as listed in ABR publicity.
The titles on the covers are handlettered. Those for Scotland and England closely follow Bauer’s Quick AKA Trafton Script, but are bolder in weight. The one for Ireland is based on Beton extrafett, featuring its alternate R with curved leg. The line below is in caps from Beton fett, this time with the straight-legged R. “The Romance of Scotland and “This is England” are patterned after Gill Sans Condensed. This typeface is also used directly, in two widths, for the information at the bottom of each cover.