Waterford Railways

The first attempt to establish a railway from Waterford city can be traced to an Act of Parliament in 1826 to permit a railway to be built from Waterford to Limerick . The first railway actually built in Waterford was the line going from Waterford City to Kilkenny in early 1848, followed by the most famous of the lines: Waterford city to Tramore built in September 1853. This line was unique because the rolling stock and method of working varied little during many years
of its operation.

Quite unconnected physically with the other Irish railways, it carried on a prosperous but somewhat retiring existence, dependent mostly on the seaside passenger traffic between the city and the famous resort. Plans were mooted in 1853 for an extension from Waterford to nearby resort of Dunmore East from which it was hoped that a steam packet service might be provided to Great Britain. However difficulty in obtaining land free of charge and the desire of the Dunmore East people to keep their resort 'select' caused the abandonment of that scheme. Despite all schemes and ideas the Tramore railway remained unconnected with other Irish railways to the close of its existence on the 31st December, 1960.

Of major significance was the route connecting Waterford to Cork via Dungarvan, Lismore and Fermoy, operated by the Waterford, Dungarvan and Lismore Railway (WD&LR) before its amalgamation with the Great Southern and Western Railway (GS&WR). Operating as it did to transport emigrants, export freight and carry tourists, this line - more than most - reflected the social, economic and political changes that marked the period of its existence.

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