The following is a list of books available from 

R.A.Whitehead & Partners.

All prices include shipping in the UK.


Garrett Threshers

Garrett Threshers and Other Machines.

On CD or as a downloadable file - Price £10.00

This book deals with the main Garrett products which have not been covered in the other publications. These include: threshing machines, living vans, trailers, traction wagons, sisal decorticators and much more. Munitions and lathes for shell manufacture were produced during the Great War but a more surprising order was that for the FE2b, two-seat fighter aircraft. Unusual items included the Never-Stop-Railway for the British Empire Exhibition held at Wembley in 1924 and a mobile rotary kiln in 1929 for the Metallic Ore Reduction Company that was designed to be hauled by the second of the Scammell 100 ton tractors.

This book is a departure from the common practice of a paper publication and is distributed via the internet and on CD Rom for viewing on a computer and allowing the printing of pages as required.


Garrett Portable and Fixed Engines.

On CD or as a downloadable file - Price £10.00

Traces the history of the development and production of the portable and fixed engines manufactured by Richard Garrett & Sons from their first portable engine, shown at the 1848 RASE show in York, to the final design of "Chile" portables in 1929. The last portable built was sold in 1936 by Richard Garrett Engineering Works Ltd.; but the last portable sold did not leave the works until 1940, having been built in 1930. Many previously unpublished photographs are included, there is an Appendix containing technical details and a comprehensive list of the portable engines produced. The list itself would fill 284 A4 pages.

This book is a departure from the common practice of a paper publication and is distributed via the internet and on CD Rom for viewing on a computer or allowing the printing of pages as required.

Garrett Portables
Glossops: Kings of Tarspraying

Glossops: Kings of Tarspraying

80 pages, A4 format, hard cover. £11.50 Reduced to £6.00

A history of the firm of W. & J. Glossop Ltd. of Hipperholme, Yorkshire from its turbulent beginning in 1906 to its takeover by Colas Ltd. in 1984. This book covers the development of tarspraying by mechanical methods and contains a large number of photographs of the steam lorries and other equipment owned by the firm. The quarrying and tar distilling activities are also covered.

Glossops purchased new Atkinson steam wagons for their tarspraying business in the 1920s and supplemented these with wagons of other makes purchased second hand. Following a change in vehicle taxation in 1934 a large number of steam wagons were taken off the road but the more favourable taxes for road making machines made the surplus steam wagons attractive to the tarspraying industry. Glossops probably had the largest fleet of second-hand Sentinel steam waggons before and after the second world war. After the war there was a move over to internal combustion engined plant including the use of articulated road burning units based on the Scammell Pioneer.

In addition to steam wagons by Atkinson, Clayton, Foden, Leyland, Sentinel and Yorkshire, Glossops also had a fleet of steam rollers and traction engines.

The last tar-spraying using a steam wagon was undertaken in the late 1960s but one Sentinel was retained by the company and was renovated complete with tarspraying gear and a grit hopper in 1977 for display purposes.

There is a list of the company's steam vehicles in the appendix.

Garrett Wagons Part 1: Pioneers and Overtypes.

142 pages, A4 format, hard cover. £18.00

A comprehensive account of Garretts’ unsuccessful attempt to enter into the steam wagon market in 1904 with an undertype steam wagon; followed in 1909 by their introduction of a successful range of overtype steam wagons. The firm was not content to produce a machine similar to that provided by its competitors but strived to make improvements that would enhance its performance and economy. These improvements involved the use of superheated steam and the adoption of piston valves. A forward control steam wagon based on the Suffolk Punch tractor was built in 1917, but remained the sole example. Details of the twelve Aveling and Porter overtype wagons built at Leiston are included as is brief mention of the tests between Brotherhood, Aveling and Foden steam wagons. A comprehensive list of wagons and their first owners is provided in an appendix.

150 illustrations including working drawings and many previously unpublished photographs.

Garrett Wagons Part 1.
Garrett Wagons Part 2: Undertypes

Garrett Wagons Part 2: Undertypes

142 pages, A4 format, hard cover. £18.00

Covers the undertype wagons made from 1922 to 1932, including the first rigid 6-wheelers and wagons on pneumatic tyres. The book touches on the attempt to use the patented system of the Steam Heat Conservation Co. Ltd. in a wagon , the effort to market shunting locomotives and railcars using wagon components, the building of 6-wheeled steam tractors for heavy haulage, and the tentative designs for a steam bus.

Garrett Wagons Part 3: Electrics & Motors.

142 pages, A4 format, hard cover. £18.50 Reduced to £13.00

A must for all those interested in electric vehicles especially trolleybuses. A description from Works archives and the people involved in building the electric and internal combustion vehicles by Garretts. 

Battery electric vehicle manufacture commenced in 1916 and culminated in the fleet of GTZ refuse vehicles for Glasgow Corporation; the last big electrics to run in the UK. 

Trolleybuses were manufactured in the works and supplied to the following undertakings: City of Bradford, Ipswich Corporation, Grimsby Corporation Tramways, West Hartlepool Corporation, St. Helens Corporation, Mexborough & Swinton Tramways, Doncaster Corporation, Southend on Sea Corporation and exports to NESA in Copenhagen, Denmark and Lima Tramways in Peru. A total of 101 trolleybuses with single or double deck bodies by a variety of coachbuilders including Charles Roe, Strachan & Brown, Ransomes Simms & Jefferies and Garretts themselves. 

This book also contains a full account of the initial foray into internal combustion engined wagons with the ill advised purchase of the Caledon business in 1926. The pioneering construction of two crude oil wagons with McLaren Benz engines in chassis very similar to the contemporary steam wagons. These were followed by prototype internal combustion engined wagons built on more modern lines. Details are included of the trials and tribulations of the test drivers in 1931 on the GB6 diesel wagon fitted with a Blackstone 6 cylinder engine. Garretts were constrained by the requirements of A.G.E. to use components from within the group, where available. After the original firm had gone into receivership
Gardner diesel engines were adopted by the new company, Richard Garrett Engineering Works, for use in the tractors with a measure of success.

A comprehensive list of all electric and motor vehicles is included.

142 pages, A4 format hardback, 150 illustrations including working drawings and many previously unpublished photographs.


Garrett Wagons Part 3: Electrics & Motors
Garrett Traction & Ploughing Engines

Garrett Traction & Ploughing Engines

142 pages, A4 format, hard cover. £18.50

Garretts built just over 500 engines of both three and four shaft designs. The range included traction engines in sizes from 4 to 8 NHP, strawburners, ploughing engines, showman's engines and road locomotives.

Made By Garretts.

32 pages, A5 format, limp cover. - Unfortunately now out of print, although limited copies are available.

A compact history of Leiston Works and its products.

Made By Garretts
Garrett Steam Tractors & Rollers

Garrett Steam Tractors & Rollers.

142 pages, A4 format, hard cover. £18.50

A history of the development of the steam tractors and rollers produced by Garretts. The output consisted of 386 rollers and 559 tractors. Only 39 Garrett steam rollers were sold new in the British Isles, many of them in Ireland and so Garretts are frequently dismissed as being insignificant in that field. On the other hand 515 of the No.4 Compound tractor were made between 1907 and 1929, a large proportion of which were sold in the UK. There is a chapter on the development of the "Suffolk Punch ploughing tractor and its lack of success".

Lists of the rollers and tractors produced and their first owners are included in the appendix.

148 black and white photographs and line drawings have been used to illustrate the book.

Garrett Diesel Tractors.

32 pages, A4 format, limp cover. £7.50

A book on Garretts' work as the first British manufacturer to offer a full compression ignition engine in an agricultural or industrial tractor, taking in subsequent designs of tracked vehicles and the rich variety of specialist tractors built for peat extraction.

Garrett Diesel Tractors
Austrian Steam Locomotives

Austrian Steam Locomotives

158 pages. Price £8.00

Published in 1982

Glazed pictorial boards. Fold out map to rear. An Introductory Survey 1837 to 1981.

A detailed description of the narrow gauge and standard gauge steam engines developed by and used by Austrian Railways. 88 pages of narrative, 70 pages of b/w photos and listings of classes of BBO steam locomotives 1918 to 1938.


  • Foreword by Professor Doktor Adolph Geisl-Geislingen
  • Preface
  • Chapter 1: The background of events
  • Chapter 2: An outline of the system's history
  • Chapter 3: Locomotive practice up to 1890
  • Chapter 4: Mainly about compounds
  • Chapter 5: Rack, special and narrow gauge locomotives
  • Chapter 6: Locomotives between the wars
  • Chapter 7: The war and the concluding years of steam
  • Chapter 8: Comments and Conclusions
  • Illustrations
  • Tables
  • Map of System

Garretts of Leiston.

Limp cover. £10.00

The first book by Bob Whitehead about the firm of Richard Garrett & Sons, spanning the period between 1778 and 1964.

Garretts of Leiston
Garrett 200

Garrett 200

Price £15.00.

Written to celebrate the bicentenary of Garretts in 1978.

Jesse Ellis and the Maidstone Wagons

84 pages, A4 format. Available from Classic Tractors

A book on Jesse Ellis a contractor based in Maidstone, Kent who ran a successful business as a ploughing, haulage and road making contractor in the latter part of the 19th century. He saw that there was a market for steam propelled vehicles where the load would be carried on the vehicle itself and as a result became a pioneering manufacturer of steam wagons building in the region of 45 wagons between 1897 and 1907.

Jesse Ellis


The above prices include free delivery in the UK.
For overseas and bulk orders please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.