The golddust is the set of standards on the inside cover and this gets looked at often including in the last couple of days vis-a-vis walling. It has of course been superseded most recently by Peco's big A4 bookazine style guide which is packed with a lot more in the way of track plans and constructional bits; not to mention a picture of David Malton (surely worth the cover price alone). However, despite having a copy of this I can't remember grabbing it to find something out, as good as it is. The price of £7 is probably comparable to the 25p of the older book and is half an inch thicker. Charm and inspiration? Can't touch it.
Starting in Scale OO is still around secondhand and if only for the standards table and the 4" nails holding the signal box up (thanks to Mr. Hill for pointing that out) it's worth getting a copy.