The Beeching Review and cuts of the British railway system from 1963 were simply catastrophic.
They encapsulate the ludicrous notions and false economies of the time, executive decisions which were and are still made without due thought of the social, environmental and economic consequences.
After all, the British railway system had been nationalised since the late 1940s; the system as a whole, if run properly, was surely highly profitable and the whole idea of nationalisation (to my mind) is for the ‘stronger’, busier, more profitable areas to help out and support financially the ‘weaker’ ones – common sense, one would think, part and parcel of joined up thinking of governments which, one would hope, were doing the bidding of the people who elected it. Not a chance.
Instead, large areas of Great Britain were left devoid of rail services, especially the outlying areas.
But it seems to me and hosts of others that Wales was the most hit, where only three major lines were left and none connecting the highly populated south to the rest of the principality.
Wales became a nation divided, without any efficient road link connecting north to south. The effects of these cuts, from which we have not recovered from even yet throughout the United Kingdom, were simply devastating.
Wales left divided by Beeching cuts
Copyright Francis Barker 2020