30.10.13

I'll Take a 1st Class Coffin Ticket Please Conductor!

When I first heard tales of London's Necropolis Railway, I thought it to nothing more than a fanciful serving of porkie-pies. Much to my surprise however, such a thing did exist!
In November 1845 and at the height of the cholera outbreak in London, The London Necropolis Railway Line was opened and proceeded to carry bodies of the departed along with their mourning living (in separate carriages) from a dedicated station in Waterloo to the London Necropolis Company's huge cemetery in Brookwood Surrey. At the time, this was the largest in the world.


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You would be mistaken to think that all is equal in death, for even the dead could travel 1st class with the LNR. 

The original Necropolis Station in London was relocated in 1902 and only to suffer heavy bomb damage during the Blitz of WWII. Although segments of rail tracks survive in Brookwood today, much of the original buildings have been demolished or repurposed.  I am quite tempted to take a trip to Brookwood soon to while away some time.........

There is an insightful and thorough write up about the LNR HERE for the curious among you!

5 comments:

  1. This is fascinating, I've never heard of the death ride, as it were. This is quite a find and I can see how you can get lost in the history of this sort of stuff. I'm guessing the regular jo on the street will never have heard of its existence.

    Buckets & Spades

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    1. I don't think many people know about it...a bit like the mail rail?

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  2. Yes, isn't that interesting that there's even a class in the coffin ride. Fascinating!! I, too, would be interested in a journey to Surrey!

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  3. This is absolutely fascinating - I can't believe I had never heard of the Necropolis Railway! It's a shame that more of the buildings weren't conserved, but it isn't surprising... it's the sort of thing that people want to do away with when it shuts down, because it suddenly seems so macabre and awful. But in later years, those of us who are further removed from the reality can't help wanting to take a look inside and see what it was like. I mean really, the dead travelling in first class? It's incredible to think about!
    xox,
    Cee

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    1. Oh Cee! You are fabulous and I am so pleased to come across people with a more curious sensibility like you. Thank you for reading!

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