Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 144,264 pages of information and 230,174 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

London and North Eastern Railway

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The London and North Eastern Railway (LNER) was the second-largest of the "Big Four" railway companies created by the Railways Act 1921 in Britain. It existed from 1 January 1923 until nationalisation on 1 January 1948. It formed the new British Railways' Eastern Region, North Eastern Region and partially the Scottish Region.

The LNER was formed out of a number of constituent railway companies, the principal of which were:

  • Great Eastern Railway
  • Great Central Railway
  • Great Northern Railway
  • Great North of Scotland Railway
  • Hull and Barnsley Railway
  • North British Railway
  • North Eastern Railway

The total route mileage was 6590 miles (10,605 km). The North Eastern Railway owned the largest mileage: 1757 route miles (2828 km), as compared with the North British Railway (1378 miles or 2218 km) and the Hull and Barnsley Railway, at 106.5 miles (171 km).

The LNER also owned:

  • 7700 locomotives; 20,000 coaching vehicles; 29,700 freight vehicles; 140 pieces of electric rolling stock and six electric locomotives; and 10 rail motor cars
  • six turbine and 36 other steamers; a number of river boats and lake steamers, etc

docks and harbours in 20 locations, including the North East coast ports, some eastern Scottish ports, Harwich and London

  • wharves, staithes, piers in similar places
  • 23 hotels
  • In partnership with the London, Midland and Scottish Railway (LMS), the LNER was co-owner of the Midland and Great Northern Joint Railway, the UK's biggest joint railway system, much of which competed with the LNER's own lines. The M&GNJR was wholly incorporated into the LNER system in 1936.