By Anthony Dawson
Reviewed by Colin Serjent
As was the case with Liverpool’s Railways Through Time, written by Hugh Hollinghurst, this book, on the inception of the Liverpool & Manchester Railway Line, there is a wide-ranging set of archive paintings, drawings and photographs, totaling nearly a hundred.
The Manchester & Liverpool Railway was opened in 1830, the world’s first inter-city passenger railway, and the first operated from the outset by locomotives.
The book covers subject matters, including various stations and ticket offices open at that time and goods warehouses, which received merchandise delivered by that rail link.
It also sheds light on the various rail links dotted around Manchester and the way animals and livestock were transported.
Amid the eye-catching image, sadly human cruelty was in evidence in two paintings by Issac Shaw, depicting cattle and pig wagons as well as sheep wagons. The pigs and sheep were crammed into slat-sided wagons by their owners, which terrified the creatures.
The book also refers to the various roles policemen, gatemen and switchmen played in operating the Line.
Subject areas related to Liverpool include descriptions of the Grand Area Edge Hill, various tunnels located in the city at that time – some still standing – and Lime Street station.
One of the most fascinating aspects of Anthony Dawson’s text is the way he describes a mile-by-mile guide to riding on the Line.