- Furness Railway
The Furness Railway (Furness) was a railway company operating in the
Furnessarea of north-west England.
The company was established on
May 23 1844when the Furness Railway Act was passed by Parliament. The line, as originally laid, was intended principally for mineral traffic (slate and iron ore), and extended from Kirkby-in-Furness to Dalton-in-Furness, this was later extended to Rampside.A later line was built from Dalton to Barrow. That portion was opened on August 11 1846. Passenger traffic began in December 1846.
Subsequent extensions took the railway to
Ulverstonin April 1854; the "Whitehaven and Furness Junction Railway" was taken over in 1865 thus extending the Furness Railway to Whitehaven, Carnforth(where the Furness linked with the London and North Western Railwayand thence to Lancaster (see below), Coniston and Lakeside). The line was linked to Lancaster on August 27 1857by the Ulverston and Lancaster Railway, which was bought out by the Furness Railway in 1862.
The Furness Railway was connected to the
Midland Railwayby the Furness and Midland Joint Railwayin 1867. Also in 1867 the Hincaster Branchfrom Arnsideto the Lancaster and Carlisle Railwayat Hincasterwas opened [http://www.railscot.co.uk/Hincaster_Branch/frame.htm] ] .
Barrow Central Station
The original main line did not run through Barrow, though its headquarters and engineering works were adjacent to St. George's Square. Through trains had to run into the terminal station and then out again to continue their journey. The new Barrow Central station was not opened until 1882, when through working became possible.
Steam locomotives of the Furness Railway"The first locomotive superintendent was later to be knighted as Sir James Ramsden, the town's leading civic figure. No locomotives were actually built in the local works itself: they were generally standard designs, purchased from other manufacturers. By 1921, fifteen different works were represented. However, W.F.Pettigrew, who had taken over operations in 1896, was to introduce some measure of standardisation.
There were also carriage and wagon-building shops, and repairs and maintenance was carried out on the equipment of Barrow Docks.
* Viaducts: The line crosses several major estuaries - the Kent and Leven rivers being among them - over substantial viaducts.
* Tunnel: the "Bransty Tunnel" in Whitehaven is 1333 yd (1219 m) in length
* Total mileage (lines owned or worked) (1912): 190.25 miles (306 km)
Details given are those shown for 1912:
* Total area of water: 278 acres (1.13 km²)
* Four docks: "Devonshire"; "Buccleuch"; "Ramsden"; and "Cavendish". There was also a Timber Dock.
* Length of quays 2.25 miles (4 km)
* The firm of Messrs Vickers built major ships for the
* There was also a deep water berth in "
* As at
31 December 1911the Railway owned rolling stock as follows:
** 130 locomotives; 348 coaching vehicles; 7766 goods vehicles; 2 steam rail motor cars
** Locomotives painted Indian red; passenger vehicles ultramarine blue with white upper panels
** Passengers carried (year ending
31 December 1911) 3 297 622
** Steamers: Barrow-Fleetwood service - four paddle steamers; lake steamers - two on
Coniston Water; seven on Lake Windermere; three Barrow steam tugs
The Furness Railway operated as an independent company until December 1922, when it was merged as one of the constituent companies of the
London, Midland and Scottish Railwayfollowing the Railways Act 1921.
Cumbrian Coast Line (history)
Information contained in this article is extracted from "Railway Year Book" (Railway Publishing Company) for 1912
* Conolly, W.P., (1957), "Pre-Grouping Atlas and Gazeteer", p. 24 and p. 26, Fifth Ed. Repr. 1997, Ian Allen, ISBN 0-7110-0320-3
* [http://cra.photos.gb.net/ CRA Photo Archives]
* [http://www.cumbrianrailwaysassociation.org.uk/ Cumbrian Railways Association]
* [http://www.furnessrailwaytrust.org.uk/frco.htm Furness Railway Trust]
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