Signals Passed at Danger (Crecy)

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A hundred years on from the legislation that grouped Britain's private railway companies into the 'Big Four', this book explores the often fraught relationships between government, parliament and the railway. The 1923 grouping closely followed the creation of the Ministry of Transport in 1919 and marked the start of the political intervention that continues to this day.

Signals Passed at Danger traces the stormy relationships between politicians and railway people, the origins of mistrust which led to constant political interference in the industry and the unending upheaval caused by frequent reorganisations as various political theories were tried and found wanting. The story begins with the undue parliamentary influence wielded by railway directors in the nineteenth century and continues with the broken promises of governments after two world wars to recompense the railways for the depredations of war, to the irresponsibly experiment of privatisation in the 1990s along with the subsequent attempts to deal with the consequences.

The authors have both worked in the front-line of the relationships between government and railway, drawing on their experience as well as meticulous research, they paint a broad canvas, but one illustrated with local detail to show the consequences of high level political decisions.

Illustrated throughout with archive black & white and more recent colour photographs, as well as reproduced documents. Hardback. 200 pages.

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