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Navvies: The Men Who Built The Railways: Contents

Pick a page to read by clicking on its title in the list below:

No. Title Description
1  The Making of a Navvy  The term 'navvy' is now a rather derogatory expression, but from the time the word originated in the mid 1700s until the beginning of the twentieth century, it had a very prec...
2  All in a Day's Work  Maintaining an even gradient that would allow the Great Central express trains to run quickly meant that the line could rarely follow the contours of Britain's undulating land...
3  Where the Navvies Lived: Part 1  The building of a railway required a huge amount of physical labour, and the thousands of men employed to construct the route had to live close to the line. Moving from place ...
4  Where the Navvies Lived: Part 2  For the ten thousand navvies at work on the London Extension, contractors erected temporary hutted camps that consisted of a range of cabins made of wood and corrugated metal....
5  Mission Impossible? The Navvies and the Preachers: Part 1  At most of the villages and settlements in which navvies working on the London Extension lived, the Navvy Mission Society provided a mission room and a lay preacher for the be...
6  Mission Impossible? The Navvies and the Preachers: Part 2  The missions themselves were located either in modest, purpose built halls of wood and corrugated metal, or in existing structures such as barns and outbuildings. Inside, the ...
7  Thirsty Work: Alcohol and the Navvy  The connection that is made between navvies and the consumption of alcohol is probably the single best known fact about the lives of these travelling labourers. However, even ...
8  What Happened to the Navvies?  When the London Extension opened in 1899, it signalled the end for the communities of navvies that had sprung up along the line. Some would return to work on the Great Western...