enjoyed posing for photographs and portraits!
He lived with his humans
Alan and Rosemary Cliff in North Wales, and inspired Alan
to write about his adventures in a series of books now published
by Gwasg Helygain.
Available: Alan Cliff's latest book:
"Holy War, From Llanberis to Llanuwchllyn"
Cliff's first railway book for adults, "Holy War,
from Llanberis to Llanuwchllyn" is now available,
post free, from Jack the
Station Cat Ltd. The cost of the book is £3.00
and it can be autographed by the author free of charge-
please provide details when ordering.
"Holy War", named after
a racehorse whose story has long been forgotten, was
the last narrow gauge steam survivor in a Welsh quarry
and is the only Welsh narrow gauge loco to have flown!
Read this delightful booklet about a little unforgettable
locomotive. Now 115 years old, the book celebrates her
life from 1902-1967 in the Dinorwic quarry to her new
life 1975-2017 on the Bala Lake Railway.
latest Adventure: Jack The Station Cat Takes a Holiday
new Jack Book, "Jack the Station Cat Takes a Holiday",
is now available, post free, from Jack
the Station Cat Ltd.
Ramsbottom, proprietor of Ramsbottom's Rapid Removals
and friend of the Station Master at Tail's End station,
needs a holiday. He invites Jack the Station Cat and
his relatives to go with him. Dorset and the Swanage
Railway is their destination. Sir Bedivere, the Station
Snail at Swanage, has a mysterious message for Jack:
"Mr Ramsbottom on a secret treasure hunt. Watch
out for Eli Clutterbuck." What does this mean?
Jack and the other cats intend to find out.
Cat with a Mission supports charity literacy campaign in
October 2014, leading charities, organisations, teachers
and children’s authors launched a national mission
in Wales to get all 11 year olds reading well by 2025.
The coalition called Read On. Get
On, Darllena.Datblyga in Welsh will galvanise the nation
to play its part in making this happen.
Alan Cliff, children’s author
from Rhyl, has lent his support by writing a ten minute
story for the UK wide literacy campaign called ‘Jack
the Station Cat: Special Agent ‘ a new adventure
for his much loved feline friend .
Reading is the key to a child’s
future; it unlocks their potential and opens up a world
of opportunities. However, every year, four in ten (40%)
of pupils in Wales still arrive at secondary school
with reading ages below their chronological age [Estyn
2010-11 report]. The recently published Welsh Government
National and Numeracy test result also showed that children
living in disadvantaged areas did less well with their
reading than those in more affluent areas.
A report by the UK Read On.Get On.
called Reading For A Fairer Future, also found that
GDP (Gross Domestic Product) in 2025 could be £32
billion higher if action had been taken to ensure all
children were reading well by the age of 11. The report
• 73% of 8 to 11 year old girls said they enjoyed
reading compared to 59% of boys.
• Children are not reading enough outside school,
or with their fathers. Five year old children whose
fathers read to them daily will be almost half a year
ahead in their reading a few years later, than a child
read to less than once a week.
Alan Cliff says of the Campaign;
“I am honoured to support STC's
literacy campaign in Wales because I believe the ability
to read opens a path to life-long learning. In the modern
world the inability to read is a grave hindrance to
fullness of life. Every child should be given the opportunity
to learn to read and to be constantly encouraged in
their efforts. Confident readers invariably become confident
in all aspects of life.”
Read On. Get On aims to create a nation
of strong readers by:
• supporting parents to read with young children
for ten minutes a day
• urging the public to volunteer to help disadvantaged
children improve their reading
• building a powerful coalition of the most influential
public, private and charitable organisations to pledge
to support the mission
• urging all political parties to support the
2025 target and two interim 2020 goals
In support of the mission a number
of acclaimed Welsh children’s authors including
Jon Gower, Jenny Sullivan, Alan Cliff, Dan Anthony,
Elen Caldecott, Caryl Lewis, Bethan Gwanas, Elin Meek,
and Manon Steffan Ros have provided exclusive 10-minute
reads that can be enjoyed by children and their parents.
For further Information please contact:-
Railway Modellers, Young or Old!
maker Graham Lock has designed an "0" gauge
"Jack the Station Cat" Private Owner road/rail
container. It fits both coarse scale and tin-plate flat
wagons such as those by Hornby, Bassett- Lowke, etc,
and modern finescale conflats. The model sits perfectly
on Corgi Classic 1:50 lorries and the wooden 1:50 models
by Paul Anderson. The container is available in a variety
of colours. Price is £12.00 plus £1.00 P&P.
Each container has its own labelled box.
The containers are available from
the manufacturer, Graham Lock, on +44 (0)7903 676177
Update! Graham can now supply "0"
gauge Jack the Station Cat cable drums in a variety
of colours. Price is £3.50 plus postage for one
drum or £3.00 each plus postage for two drums
Photos by Mark Armstrong.
attends Rhyl Minature Railway's Centenary Gala
Alan and Jack attended Rhyl
Minature Railway's centenary gala celebrations in
May and were kept busy signing books!
They would both like to extend their
congratulations to the railway on reaching this amazing
milestone! Over 4,400 passengers
were carried by the railway over the Centenary Gala.
Thanks to David
Hunter of Dalton Video, Rhyl, and to Tatsutoshi Okuda
for the photographs.
first day cover featuring Jack the Station Cat and the
Bala Lake Railway is a limited edition of 250 by Buckingham
Covers. The narrow gauge locomotive on the railway stamp
is Holy War. With the remains of Alice, whose photo
is in the left hand corner of the cover, Holy War was
brought back to Wales and the Bala Lake Railway by Alan
Cliff in 1975. When steam finished at Dinorwic Quarry
Llanberis, where they had worked all their lives, the
little engines were sold and lived at the Quainton Road
Steam Centre Buckingham until "repatriated".
The picture of Jack the Station Cat
in the right hand corner of the cover is from the Jack
book, "Jack the Station Cat and the Great Little
Trains Robbery". This story features "Holy
The Cats on Stamps Study Unit, an
affiliate of the American Philatelic Society, has informed
us that Jack the Station Cat is the first feline in
Anglo-Welsh children's literature to appear on a first
day cover in the present century and before. Jack is
also the only British children's literary feline, big
or small, on a stamp or First Day Cover appearing in
stories being written now. The four others who have
appeared in philately since 2000 or earlier, Tigger
from Winnie the Pooh, Pussy Cat from "Owl and the
Pussy Cat," Shere Khan from "The Jungle Book"
and the Cheshire Cat from "Alice in Wonderland"
were originally published in the
early twentieth or nineteenth centuries The
Bala Lake Railway and Buckingham
Covers have created history. The credit for unearthing
this piece of philatelic/literary history goes to Marci
Jarvis Editor of "Cat Mews".the award winning
Journal of the Cats
on Stamps Study Unit.
Jack's first day cover is available
for £11.00 including delivery directly from Jack
the Station Cat Limited at the address listed on the
Payment should be made by cheque/postal order made payable
to Jack the Station Cat Limited.
Jack the Station Cat visits the BBC Antiques
the recording of the BBC Antiques Roadshow at "Steam"
the Museum of the Great Western Railway, Swindon during April
2010, Jack the Station cat had the pleasure of meeting Fiona
BBC News Reader and Presenter of the BBC Antiques
Roadshow and ceramics expert Henry Sandon who is one of the
longest serving members of the Roadshow's team of experts.
Pictured with Fiona and Henry is Neil Booth Of Railwayana
Auctions UK whose preserved British Railways Parcels van
the inspiration for Henry the Van in the Jack the Station
Cat books. Also pictured is Pete Waterman the music impresario,
a well known railway enthusiast, who like Neil Booth and
his van was a guest at the Antiques roadshow recording.
purchase books please see the purchasing
section on our books page
can find out what else we can offer by clicking on the relevant
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would love to see you on his Facebook page. Click here
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page or click here
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gets about – here he is at the Sittingbourne and Kelmsley
Light Railway, Lynton and Barnstaple Railway and Bala Lake