It seems these paintings were inspired by the film The Railway Children. You can learn more about them in an interview Mallet gave to Adrian Peel:
Life in Market Harborough is just one treat after another.
What, to you, is so special about the film? Why do you think it continues to be so loved 40 years on?
The film deals with some of life’s eternal themes – family, longing, adventure, dreams, overcoming adversity and nostalgia. The image of the steam train speeding through England heading off on adventures is always a thrill. And the ending – at a station – with the steam and smoke swirling and the strange figure emerging to become the girl’s father and their reunion as she shouts: "Daddy, my daddy!" is one of the best moments in family cinema.