The Railway – new BBC series goes behind the scenes of Britain’s railways


Starting this Tuesday at 9pm on BBC 2 and BBC HD is The Railway: Keeping Britain on Track. It’s a six-part series that aims to go behind the scenes of the country’s stations, staff and trains. It will obviously heavily feature Network Rail, which owns and operates the railway infrastructure – the track, signals, bridges and tunnels, along with several of the country’s largest stations, like Manchester Piccadilly and King’s Cross.

I’ve been working for Network Rail for more than six months now, and although my lack of knowledge of ‘the railway’ is at times a handicap, I’ve also obviously learnt a hell of a lot about the people and processes that keep it running so smoothly (or not, in some cases). It’s also been an education in where the responsibilities lie in operating a railway. Some things fall under Network Rail’s jurisdiction, whilst others are purely the domain of the train operating companies (TOCs), like Virgin and First.

What I’m trying to say is, I’m hoping I’ll learn a lot from this series – and I hope it will educate a lot of its audience too. Oh, and I expect it will be very entertaining at the same time.

I was a big fan of The Tube, a recent BBC documentary series that went behind the scenes of the London Underground. In fact, I wrote a little post about it on this very blog. This new series is from a different production company, but I’m sure it will tickle me in the same sorts of places. I’m looking forward to it.