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British Transport Commission: Railways Division


Records of the Railways Division of the British Transport Commission: records of Western Region British Railways 1883-1963 and London Midland Region British Railways 1966.


1883-late 20th century

Reference code


Access Status

These records are available immediately for research

Administrative /‚Äč Biographical history

The Transport Act of 1953 reorganised the British Transport Commission and the Railway Executive became the Railways Division. The Railways Division was was divided into six regions (the same as the Railway Executive), each with a general manager and British Railways Central Staff. These regions were the Eastern, London Midland, North Eastern, Scottish, Southern and the Western. Each region was placed under an area board responsible for that region's railways. For a short period of time some canals passed into the Railway Division's ownership, these were soon handed over to the Docks and Inland Waterways Executive. By the early 1960s the railways were in a poor financial position and when the British Transport Commission was abolished in 1962, the British Railways Division became the British Railways Board with a remit by the government to reduce costs.

System of arrangement

The Waterways Archive holds records for the Western and London-Midland regions British Railways. The fonds has therefore been divided into two subfonds as this is how the records would have originally been kept. The subfonds for the Western Region is further broken down into seven series for each of the canals/docks for which records are held. The subfonds for the London-Midland Region is further broken down into one series. The records within these series have been arranged chronologically while keeping records relating to each other together. This means that some records may fall slightly out of the chronological sequence.