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Book Reviews

The Fateful Day

The Fateful Day
PUBLISHER Armagh District Council Council Offices, The Palace Demense, Armagh, BT60 4EL, NORTHERN IRELAND


AUTHOR/EDITOR * Author - Damian Woods


DETAILS
Published 1989
ISBN
Published Price 4.75
Type Book


Published in 1989 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the appaling Armagh railway disaster of 1889 in which 88 died and over 300 were injured - many of these children as the train service was a Sunday school outing to Warrenpoint - the book is a reasonable look at the accident and those events leading up to it. The author gives a concise history of how the railway arrived in Armagh through the Newry & Armagh Railway, a description of relevant matters of railway working including automatic brakes and the time interval system of train movements that was common place in Ireland at the time and was partially responsible for the accident. Subsequent chapters go into detail of the actual accident and the book is rounded off with a chapter listing the names and ages of the 88 dead - the youngest being 2 years old, a look at the injured and details of claims and subsequent legal action. The accident at Armagh so shocked the establishment that the normally laissez faire UK Parliament was forced into legislating and the Regulation of Railways Act of 1889 mandated both vacuum brakes and appropriate signalling based on interlocking and block working.


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