The Railway at last!
The Railway arrives! – 1864
Isle of Wight Observer July 23 1864
THE RAILWAY – The appearance of the station at Monkton-street, and, indeed, the arrangements everywhere, indicate the near approach of opening. The signals (Messrs Stevens and Son’s patent) have been erected along the line, and their simplicity is so great, that only absolute and wilful neglect can cause any hitch in their working; they are considered the most simple and certain of any in operation. Three engines, of first-class manufacture, are already in the engine-house, ready for use, and we understand it is intended to have a fourth when the whole length of the line to Ventnor shall be completed. When the line opens, a train will leave each end simultaneously, and arrive at Sandown at the same time; at present, arrangements are made to meet the necessities of the unfinished state of the rail. The engines will be named Ryde, Sandown, Shanklin, and Ventnor. The first and second class carriages are of a very superior order, and will be twelve in number, while we understand luggage vans, trucks, &c., will bring the plant up to forty carriages of one class and another. We have not seen any third class carriages, but we hope they will be proportionately as convenient to those already arrived. A letter appears in another column directing the attention of the directors to the Parliamentary trains and the accommodation they are bound to afford to that class of travellers. We regret that we cannot positively name the day of opening, but no exertions will be spared to commence operations on the first of next month, if possible.
Isle of Wight Observer August 20 1864
OPENING OF THE RAILWAY – HOLIDAY – It has been suggested to us that, as the opening of the Railway, (probably in a few days) will be the greatest event in Ryde, since the opening of the pier in 1814, and the starting of steamers in 1826, that it ought to be celebrated as a holiday. Shanklin cowlease is the spot looked upon as an appropriate locale, and that the catering be left to those accustomed to get up tea parties, excursions &c., so that each one may select, as he chooses, or as his pocket admits of.
OPENING OF THE ISLE OF WIGHT RAILWAY
The Government Inspector having gone over the line on this day, (Friday), has pronounced it in excellent condition. It will now be open on Tuesday next for traffic, according to the time-bills now issued.