Grace's Guide To British Industrial History

Registered UK Charity (No. 115342)

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 163,411 pages of information and 245,908 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 147,919 pages of information and 233,587 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Great Indian Peninsula Railway

From Graces Guide
1867. Tannah Viaduct.
1901. Bombay Terminus.
May 1929.

The railway was a grand trunk line between Bombay, Calcutta, and the north-west by one line, and between Bombay and Madras by another (south-eastern) line, including also an important line to Nagpore.

See also -

1845 Company provisionally registered.

1849 August 1st. Incorporated by an act of the British Parliament with a share capital of 500,000 pounds.

1849 August 17th. Entered into a contract with the East India Company for the construction and operation of an experimental line, from Bombay to or near Callian, with a view to an extension thereof to Malsej Ghaut. [1]

The Court of Directors of the East India Company appointed James John Berkley as Chief Resident Engineer with Charles Buchanan Ker and Robert Wilfred Graham as his assistants.

1851 'It will be remembered that the first turf was turned at Bombay, on the 31st of October, 1850. Very little was done for the first eight months, till Messrs. Faviell and Fowler, the contractors, at one end, and Mr. Jackson at the other, took matters in hand. The work appears to have been one of great labour and difficulty. In addition to a most trying climate (in which the constitution of Mr. Fowler, the partner of Mr. Faviell, as well as that of many of the English labourers they took out with them, failed), Mr. Faviell found himself, in March, 1852, working single-handed, his partner having gone to England for the benefit of his health. Mr. Faviell was then dependent principally on native labour: the men are scarce, and, in the rice-harvest time, always difficult to manage...'[2]

1853 Received Government Guarantee[3]

1853 April 16th. At 3:35 pm, the first passenger train left Bori Bunder (formerly Boree Bunder) in Bombay for Thane (formerly Tannah) pulled by the engine 'Lord Falkland' manufactured by the Vulcan Foundry. The train took fifty-seven minutes to reach Thane and covered a distance of 21 miles. Three locomotives named Sultan, Sindh and Sahib pulled the 14 carriages carrying 400 passengers on board.

1857 Chief engineer was Robert Maitland Brereton

1859 Solomon Tredwell, recently appointed contractor for the line, died soon after taking up the work; he was succeeded by his wife, Alice.

1865 703 miles

1866 Accident. '...a frightful accident on the Great Indian Peninsula Railway, at the reversing station of the Thull Ghaut, which resulted in the instant death of six or seven persons, and the serious injury of another. Just before coming to the scene of the accident there is a declivity varying from 1 in 100 to 1 in 37. All that is known of the circumstances is that the train, as it came down the gradient, obtained tremendous velocity, rushed past the station so rapidly that nothing but its momentary whirl was heard, dashed through a barrier at the end of the rails, and literally leaped down the precipice beyond. One of the guards jumped off and was terribly injured; but the other poor fellows who were in charge stuck to their posts and were killed in the crash. Scanlan, the guard who jumped off, is not considered to be in immediate danger, but his jaw being broken, he is unable to speak.'[4]

1868 Route kilometerage was 888 km

1868 Directors and Officers

1868 George Berkeley, Consulting Engineer.[5]

1870 Route kilometerage was 2,388.

1870 March 7th. It became possible to travel directly from Bombay to Calcutta when the Great Indian Peninsula Railway connected with the East Indian Railway.

1871 An extension of the Madras Railway to Raichur was linked with an extension of the Great Indian Peninsula Railway from Kalyan to Raichur, thereby establishing the Chennai-Bombay (Mumbai) link

1875 1266 miles in operation

1885 George A. Barnett, Agent in India; George Berkeley, Consulting Engineer. 1,288 miles in operation.[6]

1899 F. L. Soare, Secretary; George A. Barnett, Agent in India; George Barclay Bruce, Consulting engineer.[7]

1900 June 30th. The assets of the GIPR were purchased by the Government and merged with those of the Indian Midland Railway into a "new" GIPR, managed by the old company.

1910 Robert White, Consulting Engineer; F. T. Richards, Agent (Bombay); Captain H. A. L. Hepper, Deputy-Agent; P. E. Keene, Chief Engineer (Bombay); S. J. Sarjant, Locomotive Superintendent (Parel); W. H. Traill, Deputy Locomotive Superintendent; A. M. Bell, Carriage and Wagon Superintendent (Parel); A. Muirhead, General Traffic Manager.[8]

1925 July 1st. The company's management was taken over by the Government.

1951 November 5th. Incorporated into the Central Railway.

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. Morning Post - Saturday 18 August 1849
  2. Illustrated London News - Saturday 04 June 1853
  3. [1] Indian Railway History.
  4. Hull Packet - Friday 26 January 1866
  5. 1868 Bradshaw's Railway Manual
  6. 1886 Bradshaw's Railway Manual
  7. 1900 Bradshaw’s Railway manual
  8. 1911 Bradshaw’s Railway Manual