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The Railways That Built Britain with Chris Tarrant

  • Season 1
  • 3 episodes
  • History
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Episode 1: Boom, Bust and Blood

Summary

The broadcaster examines how trains transformed the nation and shaped modern Britain. He begins in the cab of Puffing Billy, the world's oldest-surviving steam locomotive, which was built in 1813 and designed to move coal along a five-mile stretch of track from a Northumberland mine to the docks. Chris also tells the story of Henry Booth, who not only championed George Stephenson's famous Rocket, but also helped finance it, and talks about the work of the navvies who dug the tunnels and laid the tracks.
Recommended

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Recently Britain’s railways have been grinding to a halt but they’ve never been so popular on television. In this three-parter, Chris Tarrant chronicles how they revolutionised Britain, fuelling the Industrial Revolution and turning us into a nation of day-tripping fish and chip-scoffing city dwellers.

The first 50 years of rail rarely ran smoothly, with the working class jammed into open-air wagons like sheep. Then an anti-drink campaigner called Thomas Cook accidentally invented the package holiday when he arranged a train to take a group to a temperance rally and sold a lot of tickets.

How to watch

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Details

Formats
Colour

Credits

Cast

rolename
PresenterChris Tarrant

Crew

rolename
DirectorTim Usborne
Executive producerJames Hayes
ProducerTim Usborne
Series producerEd Booth

All episodes

  • Episode 1

    Boom, Bust and Blood

    Summary

    The broadcaster examines how trains transformed the nation and shaped modern Britain. He begins in the cab of Puffing Billy, the world's oldest-surviving steam locomotive, which was built in 1813 and designed to move coal along a five-mile stretch of track from a Northumberland mine to the docks. Chris also tells the story of Henry Booth, who not only championed George Stephenson's famous Rocket, but also helped finance it, and talks about the work of the navvies who dug the tunnels and laid the tracks.
    Recommended

    Review

    Rating: 4 out of 5.

    Recently Britain’s railways have been grinding to a halt but they’ve never been so popular on television. In this three-parter, Chris Tarrant chronicles how they revolutionised Britain, fuelling the Industrial Revolution and turning us into a nation of day-tripping fish and chip-scoffing city dwellers.

    The first 50 years of rail rarely ran smoothly, with the working class jammed into open-air wagons like sheep. Then an anti-drink campaigner called Thomas Cook accidentally invented the package holiday when he arranged a train to take a group to a temperance rally and sold a lot of tickets.

    How to watch

    Loading

    Details

    Formats
    Colour

    Credits

    Cast

    rolename
    PresenterChris Tarrant

    Crew

    rolename
    DirectorTim Usborne
    Executive producerJames Hayes
    ProducerTim Usborne
    Series producerEd Booth
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