Regional History of the Railways of Great Britain Volume 14 The Lake Counties
A Regional History of the Railways of Great Britain Volume 14 by David Joy
Hard Cover with Dust Jacket
270 Pages 45 plates, 21 illustrations in the text and large folding map (Attached to back cover)
NOTE ON THE MAPS 6
I INTRODUCTION 7
II THE WEST COAST ROUTE 15
Rival routes rails to Scotland the line and its junctions • a century of progress
III THE MIDLAND CHALLENGE 40
The Midland moves north • the Ingleton branch main line over the Pennines • features of the route • changing fortunes • connecting lines
IV CARLISLE 63
The `Border City' • linking the seas • sparring partners • brief interlude • the North British • Midland renaissance • eighty years on • modernisation
V FURNESS-AND BEYOND 97
`Oversands' • small beginnings • the Cumberland connection • completing the coastal chain • the tail that wagged the dog • a change of direction - Barrow: the `English Chicago' • Carnforth to Ulverston • north of Barrow
VI WEST CUMBERLAND 142
Pits and ports • `the great thoroughfare' • along the coast • inland to Cockermouth • Port Carlisle and Silloth • the Bolton loop • tapping the ore-field • rails over the Solway • wheeling and dealing • `track of the ironmasters' • boom time to depression • recent times
VII THE LAKE DISTRICT 195
`Rash assault' • Kendal and Windermere • the Coniston branch through northern Lakeland • the Lake Side branch • `Ratty'
VIII ON-AND OFF-THE RAILS 223
Main-line services • around the coast • Lakeland tourist traffic • industrial lines • accidents
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS AND FURTHER READING 241
NOTE ON THE MAPS
The majority of the maps, including the folding map inside the back cover, depict the network at its maximum extent rather than at any specific date. Exceptions are maps 1 and 4, the chronological diagrams of Carlisle and Barrow giving opening and (in brackets) closing dates, which should in both cases be used in conjunction with the detailed map on the facing page. Significant changes in station names are shown with the original name in brackets.
Dominated by England's highest mountains and most dramatic scenery, the region possessed in its heyday a railway network of immense fascination and variety. Two rival Anglo-Scottish trunk routes had perhaps their most spectacular stretches here. The London & North Western climbed up from sea level near Lancaster by way of Grayrigg and the Lune gorge to Shap, while the Midland had in its legendary Settle & Carlisle line a tour de force of Victorian railway engineering. The two companies met their Scottish neighbours at Carlisle in a unique joint station which generated both a kaleidoscope of colour and an atmosphere of mutual distrust.
Beyond the mountains was a quite different network of lines, locally promoted but once phenomenally prosperous, providing for a few halcyon years the arteries for the development of an iron and steel industry of world importance. Their many remarkable achievements reached a pinnacle in boom town Barrow, where the Furness Railway assumed the role of benevolent dictator and turned a hamlet into an `English Chicago' with the then largest docks in Britain.
The decline of Cumbrian iron-making brought greater exploitation to the area's tourist potential with the expansion of Lakeland branch line and steamer services and the growth of resorts as diverse as Grange, Keswick and Seascale. Conservationists rebuffed attempts to penetrate what they regarded as the sacrosanct heart of the region, and today the Lake District has largely turned its back on the railway through wholesale closures and the building of massive modern highways.
This volume vividly recounts the railway history of the Lake Counties, set against the social, economic and geographical background.
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