Bachelor of Medicine, Manchester (England) University, 1946; Bachelor in Surgery, Manchester (England) University, 1946; Doctor of Medicine, Manchester (England) University, 1951; Doctor of Science, Manchester (England) University, 1981.
He is best known for his three-volume history of the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway 'which he greatly disliked being described as "definitive"' and for compiling The Guinness Railway Book 'which, in its six editions, is arguably the best selling railway book of all time.' Born in Nottingham, John Marshall was conscripted into the Royal Air Force, serving as a wireless mechanic in India. He retired to Bewdley where he worked as a volunteer on the Severn Valley Railway. He wrote many articles and books on railway history, his history of the L&YR being published by David & Charles in 1969–72, also travelling very widely in pursuit of his interest, as witnessed by his work on the metre gauge railways of Switzerland and his compendia of international railway facts for Guinness Publishing.
Member Warnock Committee on Embryo Experimentation, United Kingdom, 1984. Lieutenant colonel Royal Army Medical Corps, 1949-1951. Member Association British Neurologists (treasurer 1971-1977).
Married Margaret E. Hughes, October 9, 1946. Children: Michael J., Christopher J., Patricia M., Molin C., Catherine A.