Light Railway Construction
Plateway Press Taverner House, Harling Road, East Harling, Norwich, NR16 2QR, UNITED KINGDOM
* Author - E. R. Calthorp
This publication is a modern reprint of a paper originally published in 1897 by E R Calthorp - an engineer who extensively used narrow gauge railways as a mean of
opening up areas of India where construction of standard gauge railways were deemed uneconomic. The principles established would apply elsewhere - including
The author was ahead of his time in advocating one central management organisation for light railways in Britain and he cites Ireland as an example of bad practice
in having multiple and separate railway companies (correctly so). He advocates a similar structure for Ireland "so that the proportion of management charges to other
expenses could be reduced, together with the cost of maintenance and renewal of rolling stock." He correctly notes that each narrow gauge line has its own
workshops, own rolling stock pattern and new engines/wagons must be bought in small batches for each individual company.
The one error I noted was that on page 15, he claims that the length of narrow gauge railway in Ireland was 2,025 miles! (this would have been about the extent of all
public railways in Ireland in 1870. I calculate the total at c.600 miles).
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