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ABOUT SANTONA PUBLICATIONS - Ordering and contact details
 Where to buy our books
We are now a part of the Book Law Publications family who operate a direct mail order service in the UK and around the globe with all books securely packaged in stout card cartons and sent by 2nd class post. You can order by phone, letter or On-Line via the Book Law website and payment via all major credit cards is accepted.

Go to the Book Law website

We also supply most of the specialist railway book dealers including; Bill Hudson Books, Midland Counties Publications, Ian Allan, Motor Books, Bob Pearman, Douglas Blades and many more.

You can also order our books through UK model shops, independent book shops and high street book shops, such as Waterstones and Ottakers (though please note that a charge for P&P may be levied by these companies).
 Contact Us

(Note that our relevant product pages link directly to the Book Law Site)

Alternatively, to order via credit or debit card, you can contact us by phone on:
(UK): 0115 961 1066 or
(Overseas): +44 115 961 1066

or write enclosing full payment to:

Book Law Publications
382 Carlton Hill

Book Trade Enquiries: please phone for terms.
 The Business
Santona Publications began as a small independent book publishing business in 1994 specialising in Railway, Model Railway and Yorkshire Interest titles.
Originally based in Hull, East Yorkshire the business is now part of the Book Law Publications family which currently operates developing, distributing and retailing both new and existing titles in the UK and around the globe. Currently the core business is in railway and model railway interest books.
Book Law operates an around-the-clock sales and order department and aim to despatch all stock items within 5 working days.

Book Law is interested to hear from prospective authors with any relevant material.

 History of the business
Santona Publications was established in 1994 by Raymond Flint, a former LNER and BR steam railway locomotiveman turned college lecturer from Scarborough, Yorkshire.
The initial impetus was the publication of a series of steam railway fiction titles written by Mr Flint and based on his life experiences as a young man on the railways in the 1940s. Shortly afterwards David F Walford joined the business as an associate and there was a branch out into Yorkshire interest titles with two walking and cycling guides covering the region. In 1996 Steve Flint, Ray's son, became a partner in the business and took on a managing editor role with further plans to develop a series of books specifically aimed at the railway and model railway enthusiast market segment in the UK.
By the time Mr Flint senior died in 2000 the book market was changing rapidly, many local bookshops were closing down and the internet was beginning to take on a steadily rising influence. A decision to focus on the railway and model railway market segment was taken and the plans to further develop local titles were put on hold.

In 2002 Steve Flint joined Peco Publications, the publisher of the Railway Modeller magazine, as a photographer and editorial assistant, working on the company's two market leading magazines and their very popular series of other model railway publications. This was a full time position based in the north of England resulting in activities here at Santona Publications becoming part-time. Steve is now editor of RAILWAY MODELLER and in 2008 sold his interests in Santona Publications to Book Law Publications.

Peco Publications

 Bio - The Founder of Santona Publications: Raymond Flint, Bsc (Hons) Hull. 1927 - 2000
Raymond Flint was born in Edgehill Court, Seamer Road, Scarborough in 1927. Equally as inauspicious as all other people born on that local authority housing estate built shortly after the upheavals of World War One. He was the second son of a miner, which placed his roots firmly within those of the working classes.
His childhood years passed as ordinarily, enduring the minimal education that the state schools of the time provided. Upon leaving school at 14 he passed through a number of short lived jobs before securing employment, thanks to the efforts of his mother, as a porter at Central Station in Scarborough. That story has not yet been told.
Soon after his experiences on the busy station platforms, and much to his mother's chagrin, he transferred to the locomotive sheds and became an engine cleaner. It is only looking back through rose tinted glasses the magic of the mighty steam engine can give such a lowly job an air of romance. He found it a hard and filthy activity, as did his contemporaries; yet it set him up for a career which, unbeknown to him, would provide an outlet for his writing ambitions many years later. He progressed from engine cleaner to fireman and eventually to passed fireman which enabled him to drive the engines that he had stoked for years. Ever conscious of his poor education, he set out to better himself studying for O levels through postal courses and night school and eventually, in 1961, he was sponsored by his trade union to attend a diploma course at Ruskin College Oxford. 1963 brought closure to Scarborough locomotive sheds: diesel trains were rapidly taking over services and the great age of the steam was coming to an end. He transferred to Falsgrave goods depot where, as a clerk, he became a 'white collar worker'.
A new career in education now beckoned and following acceptance he became a teacher of English at the Technical College in Bradford. A year later he was accepted as a mature student to the University of Hull where he studied for a degree in Economic and Social History and Politics. Thus after 40 years, he finally left his roots in his home town and moved his family to Kingston Upon Hull. Following graduation in 1969 with an honours degree his career turned to teaching at Hull Technical College, eventually becoming a champion for disabled and special needs students. It was during this time that his first short work 'The People's Scenario' was published. This was soon followed by his first novel, published by Merlin Press; 'March of the History Animal', an allegorical tale recounting the political history of the world in the style and genre of George Orwell's Animal Farm. It was in tune with his strong Socialist beliefs and values and reflected the balance of world power just prior to the collapse of the Soviet Union and the growth of neo-Conservatism in the West.
Retirement came at the age of 60 and his thoughts turned again to writing. This time his experiences and memories on Britain's railways were to form the nucleus of a book about railway working life. The original manuscript to Men of Steam was nearing completion in 1990 when he was diagnosed as a Parkinson's sufferer. Personal resolve and firm support from his wife and family helped him to come to terms with his new disability and maintain his motivation to see his book in print. Rejections from the big established publishing houses did not deter him and in 1994 he launched the imprint name of Santona Publications. 'Men of Steam' became an overnight success paying back his initial investment in just 26 weeks. Spurred on, and despite the ever present problems of living with Parkinson's disease, he gathered all his memories together and wrote the three further consecutive volumes in the series. Following a short illness, he passed away on 10th November 2000, leaving the fifth volume in the Men of Steam series - Glory of Steam - unfinished.

 Santona: what's in the name
Where does our rather unusual and Hispanic sounding business name originate?

The Santona was a three masted barque built in 1869 and operated by the Donaldson Line of Glasgow on trade routes between Britain and South America including, Brazil, Argentina and Chile.

See www.theshipslist.com/ships/lines/donaldson.html

The significance, if there is indeed any real significance in the whole world order of things, is that a seafarer from Sunderland by the name of Thomas Wade worked as a sail maker aboard the Santona in the late 19th Century. That Thomas Wade was the great grandfather to Joan Wade who, in 1950, married Raymond Flint.

In 1891, the Santona was lost off the coast of Chile in a storm. There are conflicting reports: some say there were survivors, others say that all hands were lost. For sure, Thomas Wade was lost, never again to return to anchor safely in his home port.

Perhaps as a tribute, or perhaps of the ancestral connection, Santona was chosen as the name for the publishing business and that is why a railway publisher uses a sailing ship as a logo!

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