Beginnings of the Liverpool and Manchester Railway


First-class train, Graphic, 1888
Liverpool Mercury, Oct 6th, 1826

Liverpool and Manchester Railroad

The contract for forming the tunnel under the town, from the King's Dock to Edge Hill, has, we believe been executed, and the workmen are now busy in the neighbourhood of the Mount Quarry and the Botanic Gardens, in sinking shafts or eyes as outlets for the stone or sand to be removed in the operation.

Liverpool Mercury, March 28th, 1828

House of Commons

Liverpool and Manchester Railway

Thursday March 20th, On the motion of General GASCOYNE the Liverpool and Manchester Railway Bill was read a third time and passed.

Liverpool Mercury, Feb 16th 1827

Liverpool and Manchester Rail-road, the Edge Hill tunnel

The extraordinary and stupendous undertaking of excavating a wide and lofty tunnel, from the shores of the Mersey, under the town, to the other side of Edge Hill, for the passage of carriages to the line of open railway, is proceeding with as much celerity as the nature of the work will permit. The excavating began at different points on the line of the intended tunnel, the principal eyes being, one in White St, one at the top of Duke St, and one in Mosslake-fields, and some others are in a state of forwardness. They are each provided with the usual mining machinery for the hoisting up of the loose material, and the tunnel being driven east and west from each eye, the miners will meet each other halfway between the pits.

The greatest progress has been made in that part of the tunnel running from the eye in Mosslake-fields, and where the surface of the intended railway appears to be about 60ft beneath the ground. The substance met with in thus boring, " the bowels of the harmless earth, " is most entirely a reddish free-stone, which forms the bed upon which the town, and most of the land in the immediate neighbourhood rests, and this circumstance is no doubt favourable, as the tunnel will not require archwork of brick to be thrown over it, except where the stone is unsound, or sand or other loose material is met with. A considerable quantity of the stone is regularly quarried for building. The excavation at Mosslake-fields, has proceeded 30-40yrds each way from the eye. It is about 22ft in width and 16ft in height, and where the stone above seems somewhat insecure, it is merely supported by slender wooden props. The visitor may descend the eye in one of the buckets, with perfect security, and it is a novel and interesting sight to those who have never seen mining in its grander operations, to take a view of the noisy operations going on below, the echo of which is confined to the subterranean passage. Though numerous candles are burnt by the workmen, the "darkness" of the cavern is but "made visible" and the sound of the busy hammer, and chisel, and pick-axe, the rumbling of the loaded waggons along the railway leading from the further ends of the cavern to the pit, and the frequent blasting of the rock, mingling with the hoarse sounding voices of the miners, whose sombre figures are scarcely distinguishable, from an interesting, ensemble of human daring, industry, and ingenuity. The excavation at the top of Duke St, as it is only a few feet under the lowest level of the deep quarry there, is of more desirable access to those who are timid, as it may be entered on foot from a low inlet below. Here the miners have also proceeded a considerable way, and also from the shaft in White St, where some of the stone excavated is white, and of good quality for building purposes. The air in these caverns is as yet suitable for easy respiration, but we understand when the miners penetrate towards the points of junction, it will become unwholesome and confined. When one shaft has once a communication with another, the whole will be well ventilated. No water to impede the work has yet been found, and as the whole will be on a declivity when finished, the tunnel will be perfectly dry, and to all appearance may even be whitewashed. Ledges, or shelves, are left on the top of the perpendicular sides of the rock, to form the abutments for the archwork to be thrown over such parts as may require it.

The several eyes are situated about 20ft to the south of the tunnel, whence they communicate with it by an excavation running into it at right angle. This was owing to an alteration of the line after the eyes were sunk. The small waggons used in conveying the stone and sand from the miners, to the bottom of the pit, are easily propelled by workmen along railways, so laid, that even in the dark they cannot diverge from the proper tract. We shall from time to time notice the further progress of this interesting undertaking, upon which we hope the proprietors will continue to employ as many men as the nature of the work will permit.

Lancaster Gazette, June 30th 1827

Liverpool and Manchester Railway

For some weeks past the miners could hear each other working, and each day increased the distinctness of the sounds, until at length they had the satisfaction of exchanging looks, and enjoying the pure air which immediately rushed from one shaft to the other. The tunnels met in exactly the proper directing as well as at the proper level, which, on account of the difficulties attending the survey, caused by the houses which obstructed the sight, had by some been unexpected. The whole length excavated from these two shafts is about 500 yards, one half of which has been driven the full size of the tunnel. It is expected another communication will be made this week between the shaft in the delft near Hope St, and the one near Rathbone St, the whole of which, with the exception of a few yards, is cut out of solid rock, the roof being so good as not to require any artificial arching. The extent excavated from these two shafts is about 350 yards, and it is rather remarkable that the miners could hear each other working very distinctly, when at the distance of 40 yards from each other, although the rock was perfectly solid.

The excavation at Olive Mount has now reached a considerable depth and the stone which it produces is of very good quality, better, we would think than any in the neighbourhood of Liverpool, and the company are deriving a considerable profit from the sale of this stone, besides what they use for the purpose of the railway.

From this place to Broadgreen, a distance of more than a mile, a double line of railway is in daily operation, removing stone etc, to form the embankment in the low ground. A bridge of considerable dimensions, supplied from this place with stone, has been built at Broadgreen in the short space of twelve days, so as to allow the waggons to pass over the arch. Excavations are also forming in the neighbourhood of Huyton, Whiston and Newton, and preparations are making for building the viaduct across the Sankey Valley and Canal. The road in this valley will have to be raised 60 feet above the ground, and it is intended to be effected by means of arches, which will be a great saving, as the ground on each side will not yield sufficient earth for raising a mound of the requisite height.

Turning out attention to Chat Moss, an embankment has been made about 300 yards long, and 10 feet high, from some of the worst kind of moss, the water has gradually drained off, and the embankment is now quite hard and firm, and the place from whence the moss was excavated has not any of those alarming appearances which were originally anticipated.

The work is also advancing in the neighbourhood of Worsley and Eccles, where two very neat bridges have been built. This is an experiment which is to prove whether railways possess advantages superior to any other modes of conveyance, and the result, we feel confident, will not only be advantageous to the subscribers, but of the greatest importance to the nation at large. Mr STEVENSON the engineer is entitled to great praise for the skill and science he has shewn in the direction of these important works, Liverpool paper.

Liverpool Mercury, Sept 21st 1827

Liverpool and Manchester Railway

This important work is proceeding successfully in all the great departments of the undertaking, in the tunnel, in the deep cutting through Olive Mount, in the inclined plane at Whiston, in the operations for the stupendous viaduct over the valley of the Sankey, in the building of the bridges, of which there are already six erected, and last, though not least, in the formation of the roadway over Chat Moss, that natural and awful barrier, which so much excited the fears, and bewildered the comprehension, of Mr Francis GILES, civil engineer.

In the neighbourhood of Wavertree Hall may be seen a specimen of the railway, as laid down on the permanent level, on large blocks of stone, whose area and solidity, combined with the massive rails which are firm set on their surface, impress the idea of a structure which is intended to last for ages. Persons who have visited the Darlington Railway are struck with the beauty and effectiveness of that undertaking, but in substance and strength it is much inferior to the Liverpool and Manchester. The weight of the Darlington rail is 28lbs per yard, that of the Liverpool 35lbs, and the stone blocks of the latter are about three times in substance of the Darlington.

In a perfect railway three qualities are essential, smooth surface, level way, and very gradual curves, where some deviation from a straight line is unavoidable. Too little attention appears to have been paid to all these points till the engineer of the Liverpool railway Mr George STEPHENSON, demonstrated their paramount importance. Already the railway may be considered one of the lions of Lancashire, and our Liverpool friends who may not feel disposed to descend sixty or seventy feet into the bowels of the earth, to explore their way through the vaulted tunnel, may find ample entertainment in a ramble along the line of the operations from the neighbourhood of Edge Hill, through the fields till you cross Wavertree Lane, then on to the great excavations at Olive Mount, and still further to the embankment at Broadgreen, operations which, for design and extent, considered as part of the great whole, will hardly be equalled in any other part of the Kingdom.


Chat Moss showing famous line constructed by George Stephenson, Graphic, 1888
Liverpool Mercury, Oct 5th, 1827

Liverpool and Manchester Railway

This stupendous work has already proceeded as far as to become an object of great interest, not only to the people of Liverpool, but to strangers who visit the place. It enters the town by a tunnel upwards of 2,000 yards long, 22 feet wide and 16 feet high, and terminates near Wapping, and thus obtains access to the docks without interfering with the streets and buildings. The entrance of the tunnel is near Edge Hill, about 500 feet below the surface, from thence the ground gradually falls, until the railway crosses Wavertree Lane at the level of the road. Soon after passing that road the cuttings commence, which, at Olive Mount are about 66 feet deep, and after about a mile and a half of excavation, of different depths. The embankments commence at Broadgreen, and continue about a mile and a half , in some parts being elevated 45 feet above the ground, from thence it proceeds with alternate excavations and embankments, but with a regular descent of 4 feet per mile from the mouth of the tunnel to the foot of the inclined plane at Whiston, passing over Rainhill by two inclined planes, of a mile and a half each, three-eights of an inch to a yard, then going on a level about two miles, crosses the Sankey Canal near Newton Common, by a viaduct 60 feet high, of 19 arches of 50 feet span each, from hence it declines 6 feet per mile to the edge of Chat Moss, over which it passes, rising 4 feet per mile, and after going over the Duke's Canal by a bridge at Patrickcroft, proceeds to Manchester on a level.

About one half of the tunnel is already excavated, and the cutting has proceeded to a considerable depth at its entrance at Edge Hill. A short piece of the road is permanently laid on both sides the crossing of Wavertree Lane. The excavations at the centre of Olive Mount are already 30 feet deep, and the embankment is carried to a considerable extent at Broadgreen, with two handsome stone bridges for the accommodation of the owners of the land. Excavations and embankments are proceeding at Huyton and Whiston. The piling of the foundations for the piers and embankments are going on at the Sankey viaduct, from thence nothing is done to the edge of Chat Moss, where great and satisfactory progress has been made. The extensive embankments at each side, made of the soft materials of the moss, are interesting objects. The inspection of them , with a walk across this once impassable barrier, soon dissipate from the mind of the observer all apprehensions of difficulty.

Bridges, which are an ornament to the work, are built on each side of the Moss, the one over the brook near Bury Lane is of brick, but that over the Duke's Canal at Patrickcroft is of stone. After passing over this bridge, a part of the road is permanently laid, and excavations are proceeding towards Eccles, where the works at the end at present terminate.

Railways can only be considered as an advance in improvements in road making. These have been projected to shorten distances and level roads, by cutting down hills and filling up valleys giving them a hard and smooth surface, and are only carried by railways to a higher degree of perfection. If iron rails had never been thought of, precisely such a road ought to have been made between Liverpool and Manchester. The tolls on the road from Liverpool to Warrington are let for more than 6,000 per annum, and if as much is made on the Manchester side, it would make, 18,000 per annum, and these tolls might be at least doubled on a level road five miles shorter than the present, so that even as a turnpike road, it would be a work of great utility, and would more than pay five percent, on its cost. Had its object never gone beyond this, we should never have heard of the bugbear of Chat Moss, or other imaginary difficulties which the advocates of water conveyance have invented.

The most substantial proof of the utility of the undertaking is the revenue it will be likely to produce. The travelling, or conveyance of goods, whether locomotive engines or horses are employed, may be at a rate of 8 or 10 miles per hour, at either speed they will go in as little time as the coaches. Whatever difference of opinion may yet exist as to the cheapness of canal or railway conveyance for goods, there can be none about passengers, for a horse on the railway will convey about 10 times the number, just the same may be said about steam-carriages, if they answer on a common road, they will do so much better on a railway. The conveyance of passengers being a leading object, it has been ascertained that 561 persons going out of town passed Low Hill in coaches, chaises, gigs and on horseback in one day, which reckoning both ways, would make 1122.

The passengers by the Runcorn boats, and the Wigan and Manchester Canal packet, in and out on the average of two days [one at the spring and the other the neap tides] was 494 per day, making altogether 1616 persons. Many of the persons counted would not go all the way to Manchester, but this might be made up by as many setting out from the other end. That vast increase of travelling, wherever new facilities have been afforded, as on the Darlington railway, which has increased to at least ten times the number, has partly arisen from all persons making to the line, whose journey was to terminate on any part of it. Thus it is probable that the travelling from Liverpool to London will mostly be by way of Manchester, for though it is about 10 miles round, there would be little loss of time and some saving of expense. If we make allowance for an increase by cheapness and facility, it would not be unreasonable to expect 1600 per day, which, a 4s each, would make 116,800 per day. If two-thirds of the cattle, sheep and pigs now arriving were to go on the railway, the tolls by Act of Parliament, would be 12,000, and the coals from Prescot could not be less than 10,000, so that making large allowances from these estimates, which are independent from any interference with canal conveyances, it would require a very small proportion of the goods to make a dividend of 25 per share.

Whilst the tolls remain at full rates a large proportion of the goods, where despatch is no object, will still go by water, an account of local conveniences at one end or the other, and no reduction in the rates is likely to take place even in the second year, for a large proportion of the revenue would be required to pay the interest, according to the last Act of Parliament, for the time the shareholders will have been in advance, but if in the second year 25 per share is divided, the rates of toll on goods, but not on passengers or cattle, will, next year, have to be reduced to one-fourth part of those fixed by Act of Parliament, and would then be for coals 1s and for cotton 1s-11d, per ton, for tonnage the whole length of the line, which, including the expense of carriage, would make about 2s-6d per ton for coals, and 4s per ton for cottons, then the competition between the railway and the canals will be fairly tried, but the success of this concern is not dependant on the result.

So far as can be ascertained, there is not much probability that the whole cost of the execution of the work will vary much from the estimate either way, though some things will cost more, and others will be done for less, but this is of no great consequence to the proprietors, for as the law now stands, it is but a question, whether so much shall be applied to pay the interest of a loan, if one were necessary, or whether it be given to the public in a reduction of rates? This provision for reducing the rates, as the dividends advance, at one secures the public from high charges, and the proprietors from competition.

Where there is such a vast communication as that between Liverpool and Manchester, it was right to take as direct a line as possible, to cut through hills and fill up valleys, without much regard to expense, and therefore the cost of this work is no criterion for others. The cost of iron for a single line is only about 1,000 per mile, and in some favourable situations the land, making the road, with blocks and fences, would not exceed 2,000 more, what the excavations and embankments might be would entirely depend on circumstances, but there may be cases where the whole would be completed for 4,000 per mile, and for this 120 passengers per day, paying a toll of one and a half pence per mile, would pay more than fiver per cent, per annum, without any goods whatever, and these might be taken as low as the proprietors chose to charge, and far below what they are at present carried for on any canal whatever. When it is considered that the expense of repairing the railways is far less than that of common roads, and that the country might be relieved in a great measure, from highway leys, it is reasonable to expect their very general adoption. As this is looked to as the trial of a great experiment, it is well that the Directors are pushing it forward as fast as possible, for it is probably connected with changes in the country far greater than have hitherto been witnessed from any other recent improvement.

A very cursory survey of the country will convince us that, if these data are correct, at least one hundred millions may be advantageously expended in railways, enough to support a population of one million of men, women and children for ten years! How much more rational, how much more advantageous, such undertakings than sending our men at a great expense to Nova Scotia, and our money in loans to South America.!

January 28th, 1829, "Companion to the Almanak"

Liverpool and Manchester Railway

Letter from Mr STEPHENSON, the engineer of the railway describing the works on the line and its progress :-

"The tunnel at the entrance of Liverpool, which is 2200 yards long, 10 feet high and 22 feet wide, is completed, and they are now laying the rails in it. An excavation at the lower end, where the warehouses are to be, is commenced, and an extensive excavation of not less then 150,000 cubic yards, at the upper end, is three-fourths completed. The Olive Mount excavation is upwards of 2 miles in length, and contains 480,000 cubic yards, for the most part rock, of which 301,782 are removed. Broadgreen embankment is nearly three miles long, and will contain 550,000 cubic yards, of which 330,000 are completed. Huyton excavation contains 47,000 cubic yards, is finished. Rainhill excavation contains 220,000 cubic yards of which 141,200 are removed. Sutton excavation contains 144,000 cubic yards of which 66,800 still remain the materials removed from this excavation are used to make the embankment at Parr Moss. The Sankey Valley is crossed partly by an embankment containing 200,000 cubic yards of which 140,000 are executed, and partly by a viaduct or bridge of nine arches, each 50 feet span, and from 60 to 70 feet high. Near Newton the railway passes over the high road and a small river by a bridge of four arches. Kenyon excavation the largest on the whole line, contains 700,000 cubic yards, of which nearly one half is completed. In Chat Moss, over which the railway passes for four miles, excavations have been made in some places to the extent of 520,000 cubic yards, and embankments of corresponding size have been made in other places. The Moss has been well drained, a platform of hurdles intertwined with moss has been laid on the softest part, and covered with sand and gravel, and loads of 6 to 12 tons are now passing over it. At Eccles an excavation of 145,000 cubic yards has been made, and 150,000 are yet to be removed. The Manchester Bridge over the Irwell is to consist of two arches, each 58 feet span, but is not commenced. In the whole 25 bridges have been erected on the line, and 36 large culverts."

The Cyclopede for utilising horse-power Graphic, 1888
Liverpool Mercury, July 10th, 1829

The Railroad

It is expected that there will be a locomotive engine at work in the course of a fortnight, on that part of the railroad that lies between Olive Mount and Broadgreen. The engine will convey the material excavated at the former place to the embankment at the latter. The engine is an improved principle and will consume its own smoke.

Liverpool Mercury, July 24th, 1829

The Railway Tunnel

This extraordinary and interesting work will, in the course of another week, be opened to the public. Preparations are making to render it as attractive as possible, the workmen are whitewashing the roof, in order to increase the effects of the gas-lights which are suspended from it, at distances of 50 yards from each other. The appearance, when the tunnel is illuminated, though much more beautiful, can scarcely be more interesting than at present.

Liverpool Times, July 31st,, 1829

The New Locomotive carriage

On Saturday last the new locomotive steam-engine, constructed by Mr STEPHENSON of Newcastle, was tried on the railroad. The carriage has many great advantages over those that have been formerly used for similar purposes, the first is that it burns its own smoke, and the second that it is built on such a principal that an explosion is almost impossible. The consumption of smoke is so complete, that after the fire has been once ignited, and done with wood, not the slightest appearance of smoke was visible. There will be therefore no danger of it disfiguring the country of fumigating the passengers as it goes along. The second improvement is even of greater consequence, inasmuch as it reduces almost to nothing the danger of explosion. This is effected by the means of two safety valves, one the ordinary kind, the other acting by a spring, and not liable to be affected by anything that is done by the engine-man, it is not all under his control, but will immediately remedy any carelessness of which he may be guilty. The engine is extremely neat and compact, and will pull a weight of 40 tons.

Competition Rainhill Rocket comes in first, Graphic, 1888
Liverpool Mercury, Aug 7th, 1829

Opening of the Railway Tunnel

On Friday last at 12 o' clock, this stupendous work was opened to the inspection of the public, at a moderate charge of 1s each, and from the crowds of visitors who flocked to examine this triumph of genius and art till 5 o' clock, when the exhibition closed a considerable sum was raised. The company entered at the small tunnel which goes under Edge Hill, and is 291 yards in length. At a short distance from the mouth of this is the Grand Tunnel leading from Edge Hill to within a short distance of Wapping, between Sparling St and the north east corner of the Queen's Dock. Its length is about 2200 yards with a fall of three-fourths of an inch to the yard, its width 22 feet, and height 16 feet throughout, the sides rise perpendicularly about 5 feet, from which springs the arched roof, forming a correct semicircle. The greater part [about two-thirds] is cut through solid rock, and where that has been found defective from slips in the formation, or where insecure material was encountered, the work has been strongly arched with brick. Water was met with in considerable quantities, in several places, which has been carried off with a cutting below, and with the exception of slight dripping at one or two spots, which will soon be remedied by the application of Roman cement, the tunnel is now dry throughout. The tunnel was visited by his Worship the Mayor, and by great numbers of elegantly dressed ladies and gentlemen, and the scene altogether was one of the most interesting and imposing description, which will not soon be forgotten by those who had the good fortune to enjoy it. We understand that it is the intention of the proprietors to set apart certain days in the week for the admission of the public at a moderate charge, to view the tunnel, and we doubt not that a very considerable revenue may be derived from this source, at least so ling as the novelty lasts. To strangers this noble undertaking will always be an object of interest, and curiosity, as well as a striking monument of the skill and enterprise of the projectors and proprietors.

Liverpool Chronicle, Aug 7th, 1829

Liverpool Tunnel

On Friday the tunnel of the railway was opened for the third time, and as it was understood that Mr HUSKISSON was to visit this grand work on the present occasion, the number of visitors was still greater than any previous exhibition. A little after 3pm Mr HUSKISSON arrived from the direction of Wavertree in one of the carriages designed for the conveyance of passengers on the railway, it was a light car open at both sides, but with a canopy of green cloth. It was propelled in the manner of a velocipede by two men, who sat on cushions fixed on bars of iron projecting behind the carriage. It maintained a rapid motion, being occasionally assisted by persons pushing at the sides. Besides the Right Hon Gentleman, the Mayor Mr FOSTER, Mr STEPHENSON, Charles LAWRENCE Esq and other gentlemen, were in the car, and two waggons filled with gentlemen followed, being drawn by horses.

The Right Hon Gentleman was received with three hearty cheers. After a short delay Mr HUSKISSON, the Mayor and several other gentlemen, took their stations in a waggon, which had been partly reserved for them the other part being occupied by ladies. Three other well filled waggons, one occupied by the band, were then pushed forward, and the whole cavalcade descended the inclined plane with the accustomed rapidity. A the waggon entered the arch the spectators again loudly cheered, in which they were heartily joined by the gentlemen in the waggons.

After passing through the tunnel Mr HUSKISSON was received with loud cheers by a considerable number of persons assembled in the yard of the Railway Company at Wapping. The Right Hon Gentleman then proceeded through a yard into Park Lane, where carriages were in waiting for the party, in which they returned to the Town Hall. Mr HUSKISSON expressed the greatest gratification at the railroad, and at once conveyed his admiration for the work and the estimation in which he held the talents of the engineer by saying that he, "envied Mr STEPHENSON the honour of the direction and completion of such an undertaking."

Edge Hill
Liverpool Mercury, Oct 30th 1829

Manchester and Liverpool Railway

The cutting of the railway at the Manchester end of the line, is now approaching rapidly towards termination. The excavation has been carried by one set of men more than 100 yards into the land of Mr JONES, on this side of Cross Lane, whilst another set having formed a tunnel under Oldfield Rd, are cutting in an opposite direction to meet it, and the earth they remove is being used to for the embankment on the lower ground near the river Irwell. From the operation of these two parties of workmen, and the previous removal of brick earth from the line by Mr JONES, a very few weeks will suffice to complete the line. In the meantime a great number of men are employed on the bridge over the Irwell. The foundation of the piers on each side of the river, are, we believe, both laid, and notwithstanding the unfavourable season of the year, a coffer-dam is now forming in the middle of the river for the purpose of laying the foundation of the centre pier. The bridge will be a very handsome structure of two arches, and will rise to a very considerable height above the surface of the water.

Liverpool Mercury, June 18th 1830

Visit of the Railway Directors to Manchester

In consequence of the notice given that the Directors of the Railway were to visit Manchester on Monday morning a great number of persons assembled at the railway works, to see them take their departure. At 8.45am the directors consisting of Charles LAWRENCE, John MOSS, Joseph SANDERS, R. GLADSTONE, W. ROTHERHAM, R. HARRISON, H. EARLE, James BOURNE, D. HODGSON, and W. W. CURRIE Esq'rs, and Henry BOOTH Esq, the treasurer, took their seats in two of the new coaches provided for them, in which were also, Charles TAYLEUR Esq, John CROPPER, Jun, Esq etc, and after passing through the small tunnel, seven carriages laden with stone were attached to the engine. The weight of the two coaches with passengers was about 5 tons, 7 stone waggons, 27 tons, Engine, tender and water, 7 tons. gross weight 39 tons.

The order for starting was given and the procession moved slowly towards, Wavertree Lane, where the speed was increased. The carriages passed through the deep cutting at a rapid rate, the bridges and sides of the slopes being lined with spectators, who had thronged to see the partial opening of the magnificent work. On arriving at the foot of the inclined plane an assistant locomotive engine was attached to the carriages and the train ascended to Rainhill at a steady pace. At the end of the ascent the assistant engine was detached, and the "Arrow" proceeded forward at a rate of 16 to 17 mph. On arriving at the Sankey Viaduct the speed was decreased, on account of the present unfinished state of the embankment adjoining the bridge, which is not yet sufficiently consolidated. The engine then moved rapidly past Newton to the Kenyon excavation, where a fresh supply of water was taken in, occupying about 7 minutes, afterwards proceeding at about 17 mph across Chat Moss, where the road is in such excellent order as to call forth the admiration of the directors, who pronounced it to be as perfect as any other part of the road, and after taking in another supply of water at Eccles, the engine proceeded to Manchester, where it arrived at 11.6am The whole time being occupied on the journey being 2 hrs 21 mins, which after deducting 20 mins for taking in water, leaves 2 hrs 1 min for the time performing the journey.

The directors examined the bridge and other works constructing in the neighbourhood of Manchester, after which they held a special meeting at the house of Gilbert WINTER Esq, in which the following resolution was passed, "That the directors cannot allow the opportunity to pass without expressing their strong sense of the great skill and unwearied energy displayed by their engineer Mr George STEPHENSON, which have so far brought this great national work to a successful termination, and which promise to be allowed by results so beneficial to the country at large, and to the proprietors of this concern."

signed Charles LAWRENCE, Chairman.

Having partaken of cold collation the directors returned to Oldfield Lane, where the carriages where in readiness to receive them, and after having been greeted by thousands of individuals who had collected from the surrounding neighbourhood, they left Manchester on their return to Liverpool The procession started with two coaches, containing from 40 to 50 persons, which darted through the dense mass of individuals who thronged the railway, passing Chat Moss at the rate of 22 mph, and arriving at Edge Hill in 1 hr 30 mins, after deducting 7 mins for stoppages. On arriving at Edge Hill the railway exhibited a very animated scene, both sides of the cuttings were crowded with a mass of persons who had been brought to witness the novel and extraordinary sight. The directors along with Mr STEPHENSON, alighted at Wavertree Lane, and proceeded to the house of Charles LAWRENCE Esq, the active and respected chairman, who had provided a dinner for his fellow labourers in this great undertaking.

Liverpool Mercury, Aug 20th 1830

Excursion on the Railway

Three of the locomotive engines, namely, the Arrow, the Phoenix, and the Rocket, with one of Messers BRAITHWAITE and ERICSON'S, if it has arrived and is ready, will convey a party of the directors and proprietors to the Sankey Viaduct tomorrow. Lord BELGRAVE and his family will be of the party. The two engines built by Messers BRAITHWAITE and ERICSON are to be named after his Majesty William 1V, and Queen Adelaide, by permission of the King.

Preston Chronicle May 21st, 1831

Carriage of Livestock on the railway

On Thursday week the railway company began to convey a new class of passengers. On that day 49 Irish pigs quitted Liverpool in one carriage and arrived safety at Manchester after a most noisy journey. The respectable quadrupeds evidently did not like the new mode of travelling, and in passing through the tunnel made an outcry which "echoed through the hollow dark abyss" and startled all within hearing. Since that time upwards of 300 of the tusky herd have made the same journey, being probably the first set of pigs that have travelled in a locomotive since the creation of the world. The Company will begin to carry cattle very shortly, several commodious carriages having been constructed for their accommodation.

Despatch by the railway, a dealer in Manchester was lately in want of a particular lot of sugar, he wrote to his correspondent in Liverpool by the 2 o' clock train, with the order, and the sugars were in Manchester the same evening.


Second-class train, Graphic, 1888

Liverpool Mercury, Sept 5th, 1828

Shocking accident, About 6pm on Wednesday evening, as a party of 6 men were ascending in the bucket from the railroad shaft in Pitt St, the horse which was drawing them up having been irrated by some idle boys, proceeded too far, and one man, named Arthur M'CONVIL, was caught between the wheel and the rope attached to the bucket, and was terribly crushed about the neck and chest before he could be extricated. M G. LAMONBY, surgeon who happened to be looking at the shaft at the time, assisted in extricating the poor man, and immediately examined and bled him, and afterwards accompanied him to the Infirmary, where he now lies, with very small hopes of recovery.

Liverpool Mercury, March 20th, 1829

Dreadful accident, We are exceedingly sorry to say, that during a cutting away of the part of the soil at the embankment on the Liverpool and Manchester Railway, last week, a very large portion of earth suddenly fell down, and killed one man on the spot and injured another severely. Two horses were also destroyed. We believe the superintendents and the engineer have frequently remonstrated against the plan which the workmen pursue, but without effect. It appears that the labourers, to save trouble, prefer cutting underneath the mass which they have to remove, without considering the dangerous consequences which may, and which, in this instance, have attended such a practise.

Liverpool Mercury, Sept 11th, 1829

Accident on the Railway, We understand that on Friday week, a poor fellow incautiously placed himself in the way of the locomotive engine, which was driving the waggons on the Liverpool and Manchester Railway, in Salford, when the wheels went over one of his legs, which was literally cut off. He was carried to a surgeons in the neighbourhood, but no effectual aid could be given to him, nor the bleeding staunched, and he died. On Monday week a poor fellow was killed in consequence of the clay at which he was cutting near Cross Lane, having been so undermined as to fall and bury him under it. His back was broken, and was quite dead when taken up.

Liverpool Mercury, May 1st 1830

Manchester and Liverpool Railway

On Saturday morning a dreadful accident occurred at Manchester to the workmen employed in the erection of the bridge over the Irwell, from the New Bailey field to the ground a little beyond the New Quay, in order to carry the line of railway across Water St. About 8 o' clock 19 or 20 of the masons and their labourers entered the boat which was to carry them over the river to breakfast. This number being much too large for the size of the vessel, the water nearly approached the edge, and sufficient room was not allowed for the boatman to use his oars to effect. The men, as usual gave the boat a violent push from the shore and before the boatman could get it under command with his oars, the boat with the impetus given to it, dashed against the piles. The current being very strong with the late rains, and the boat being crowded with men, in a standing position, the shock was so violent that all the men were thrown to one side, in a moment the boat filled with water, and the men, with the exception of the boatman, William WILSON, who was sitting in the boat up to the middle in water, were precipitated into the river. Several of the men seized hold of William WILSON with a convulsive grasp, in the vain hope of saving themselves, but he, making a desperate effort, plunged into the water, and dived into the New Quay wharf. William WILSON'S presence of mind in this awful juncture is worthy of great praise.

Scarcely had he arrived at the shore when he pushed two beams of wood towards the struggling men in the water, under the hope they might be of service to them. He then jumped into a stone-boat which was laying at the side, and rowed into the middle. Two of the men had clung to the piles, and those WILSON took into the boat. Their names are James M'DONNELL and James FINDLEY. Another man named Sandie MATTISON, swam to one of the New Quay rafts, and was picked up and three others, David FLEMING, John CARTER and George ROY, swam to the shore. The remainder amounting to 12 at least, were drowned, having sunk before the strenuous exertions which were being made for their rescue could be available. Of the sufferers 11 were out of the water within 2 hours, and taken to Mr RABY'S, but the 12th has not yet been discovered. An inquest was held at 5 o' clock on Sunday, the verdict was "Accidental death" The Railway Company have taken upon themselves the funeral expenses. They are all [but WILSON, who is to be sent to his friends at Bolton] to be interred in one spot, on which a stone is to be placed in commemoration of the fatal occurrence. A number of chapels have given notice of sermons and collections on the occasion.

Preston Chronicle May 21st, 1831

Accident on the Railway, An inquest was held yesterday before Nicholas GRIMSHAW Esq, mayor and coroner, on the body of James PENDLEBURY, a boy of 7, son of Mr PENDLEBURY, coal agent, who was killed on Thursday evening, about 7pm, by a wheel of one of the railway waggons passing over his head. He appeared quite dead when taken up, one side of his face being much crushed, and an eye forced out. Verdict, "Accidental death."

March 25, 1847

Work of widening the Liverpool and Manchester line from the point where it leaves Olive Mount to the point where the new Runcorn and Warrington Branch is to turn off at Huyton are now in progress. The object is to form four lines instead of two and for this purpose the Broadgreen embankment will be made as wide again as it is at present and all the other works will be increased in proportion.

July 30, 1892

Wrexham Advertiser

Cornelius WHITEHEAD a destitute old gardener, was on Saturday morning found dead with his throat cut, on the railway embankment at Broadgreen.

The death of Mr HUSKISSON

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