In 1602, there was probably a railway in Nottinghamshire in England. Although it is not verified and is debated by various historians but the origin of the English Railway can be traced back from that period. By 16th century tram roads were being used. The first public railway was the Stockton and Darlington Railway in 1825. This railway transported both passengers as well as freight.
ORIGIN OF THE ENGLISH RAILWAYS:
Earlier small patches of rail lines were laid. Each railway line was undertaken by a company. They were all under private sector and there was no uniformity. Economic pressure after the first world war lead to decline of many small railways. To face this crisis all the railway companies in Britain grouped themselves into four big groups which were called the 'Big Four.' "The members of this Big Four included the Great Western Railway, The London, Midlands and Scottish Railway, The London and North Eastern Railway and The Southern Railway. After the second world war the railways in Britain were nationalized as the British Railways. This nationalization occurred in the year 1948. The British Railways that came into origin from the year 1948 and from then there has been no looking back .
DEVELOPMENT OF THE BRITISH RAILWAYS:
The Modernization plan in 1955 stressed upon the development of British Railways. This plan included:
- Electrification of important lines
- Dieselisation of Trains
- New rolling stock for passengers as well as for freight
- Re-signaling and Track Renewal
- Closure of unnecessary lines
THE BRITISH RAILWAY:
The British Railway is the world's oldest Railway. High-speed trains of speed more than 125 miles per hour were introduced in the 1970s. It also has Metro Rails as an integral part of its network. These metro rails run under the ground in major cities forming a high-speed mode of travel for the urban commuters. It is advantageous for the people over road transport since there is no problem of any traffic jam. These underground system of railways are used in the cities of London and Glasgow.The British Railway because not only serves as a transport between two cities but also as a transport system in a city.
The British Railway was mostly overhauled by the diesel engines in the 1970s and 1980s. These diesel engines belong to the class series which constituted of several types of locomotives were replaced by high-speed electric locomotives.
THE PRESENT DAY BRITISH RAILWAY:
The present-day British Railways offers many services like freight and passenger transport. The system has also provided employment to many people. It is now fully computerized with facilities like online booking of ticket reservation, checking the expected arrival and departure timings on the Internet etc. It also provides special packages for tourism and travel. There are both sitting as well as sleeper classes of travel in the trains.
In some cases, they also also collaborated with airlines as well as ferry services to provide a convenient journey for foreign tourists as well as for native passengers.
The British Railway has majesticly traveled a long journey from its origin in 1602, till now crossing many stations and miles. There have been many developments and achievements in this long journey.
Now, the British Railway is at the summit of development, with all sophisticated modern equipment. Let us hope that this great system will still travel a long distance with many more great achievements.