Robert Hampton

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8th September 2013

British Fail
Posted by at 10.37pm | Trains | No responses

This 1990 TV documentary looking at Network SouthEast is a fascinating time capsule for anyone interested in the history of Britain’s railways.

Much as I wax nostalgic about British Rail, I don’t think anyone could sensibly advocate a return to the underfunded basket case that much of the network was after being starved of cash during the late 1980s. In particular, look at the scenes of Network SouthEast before the route modernisation kicked in. Knackered diesel trains on the Chiltern line, ancient electric trains running out of Fenchurch Street. It’s fairly grim stuff.

Some things never change: snow brings things to a standstill, commuters will whinge, transport ministers will dodge the tough questions, and the Continent is portrayed as a railway utopia where nothing ever goes wrong.

Watch the other two parts below. WARNING: Contains Prescott.

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