The writers examined more than 2000 images when they were compiling the book. Personal reminiscence and extracts from YHA magazines and reports add detail and each decade is treated separately.
The book has a slight bias towards Wales as many of the images and stories came from there, but it remains a comprehensive look at youth hostels over eight decades.
The authors were well qualified to tell the story. Helen Maurice-Jones’ family home was the youth hostel at Colwyn Bay and she has been a volunteer and a member of YHA’s Board of Trustees. Lindsey Porter is also a former trustee, who has written many books including others about youth hostels.
The book is a look back at how youth hostels and the experience they offered has changed. As people’s aspirations changed, YHA has adapted and changed. A colour section at the end of the book covers YHA as it was when the book was first written in 2010.