Irish Railways - A New History


The first passenger railway in Ireland, the Dublin & Kingstown, opened for business in 1834. From modest beginnings, the railway network expanded over the next 70 years into almost every part of the country. At its greatest extent, the national network consisted of just under 3,500 route miles of track. This era of expansion was followed by an equally long period of decline which was sparked by the partition of the country, the inexorable rise of the internal combustion engine and the economic problems of the interwar years. It was only towards the end of the twentieth century that the fortunes of the railways at last began to recover.