What is the British Rail

British Rail

British Rail (BR), until 1968 British Railways, was the UK's national railway company based in England, Scotland and Wales. It was created in 1948 with the nationalization of the country's four large private railway companies, the so-called Big Four, and was gradually privatized and dissolved between 1994 and 1997. The state-owned Northern Ireland Railways operates in Northern Ireland.

The rail infrastructure was transferred to Railtrack (later Network Rail), the passenger transport to the rail operating companies, which were combined in the Rail Delivery Group and operating under the common brand name National Rail, and the freight transport to EWS and Freightliner.

Three developments shaped British Rail: the steam locomotives were completely replaced by diesel and electric locomotives, passenger transport replaced freight transport as the most important branch of operation and the route network was drastically reduced.


See also

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Transport Act 1947 - The Railways Archive
  2. ^ Modernization and Re-Equipment of British Rail - The Railways Archive
  3. ^ Transport Act 1962 - The Railways Archive
  4. ^ The Reshaping of British Railways - Part 1: Report - The Railways Archive
  5. ^ The Reshaping of British Railways - Part 2: Maps - The Railways Archive
  6. ^ The Development Of The Major Railway Trunk Routes - The Railways Archive
  7. ↑ RHODES Dr. Michael: The Illustrated History of British Marshalling Yards. Sparkford: Haynes Oxford Publishing & Co, 1988. ISBN 0-86093-367-9
  8. ^ Railway Finances - Report of a Committee chaired by Sir David Serpell KCB CMG OBE - The Railways Archive
  9. ^ Railways Act 1993 - The Railways Archive
  10. ↑ Whether this is actually the case is controversial. Overall, the number of accidents has continued to decrease since privatization. This continued the positive trend from the British Rail era. [1]


  • David Henshaw: The Great Railway Conspiracy - The Fall and Rise of Britain's Railways Since the 1950s. Leading Edge Press, Hawes (North Yorkshire) 1994. ISBN 0-948135-30-1.
  • Terry Gourvish: British Rail 1974-97 - From Integration to Privatization. Oxford University Press, Oxford 2002. ISBN 0-19-926909-2.
  • Christian Wolmar: On the Wrong Line - How Ideology and Incompetence Wrecked Britain's Railways. Aurum Press, London 2005. ISBN 1-85410-998-7.

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