Impact of the Railways

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The building of the railways had big impact or effect on Britain. It created jobs, made goods cheaper, helped to spread information faster and changed the countryside in a way that neither the canals nor the new roads had ever been able to do.

Source A: Social and economic impact of the railways.

The railways did not just create jobs in the railway industry, they also created jobs in the coal and iron industries. They also helped to reduce the cost of transporting or moving goods from one place to another. This in turn meant that the people who made these goods could sell them cheaper. Once these goods became cheaper more people could afford to buy them so the people who made them had to make more of them, which created even more jobs. This is shown in Sources B and C.

Source B: How the railways created more jobs, 1997

The railways did just change the way goods were transported. They changed the way people travelled about the country. Instead of travelling on mail coaches people started to travel by train, which was not only cheaper but also faster.

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