This act introduced mandated standard gauges of 4 feet 8½ inches for Britain, and 5 feet 3 inches for Ireland; thus signalling the beginning of the end for Brunel's broad gauge network.
Please note that this Act is presented in its original form as passed. This Act may have been amended by subsequent legislation. For details of amendments please see the UK Statute Law Database at www.statutelaw.gov.uk.
This document was published on 18th August 1846 by Her Majesty's Stationery Office.
It was written by Her Majesty's Government.
The original document format was Paper, and comprised 3 pages.
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"WHEREAS it is expedient to define the Gauge on which Railways shall be constructed: Be it enacted by the Queen's most Excellent Majesty That after the passing of this Act it shall not be lawful to construct any Railway for the Conveyance of Passengers on any Gauge other than Four Feet Eight Inches and Half an Inch in Great Britain, and Five Feet Three Inches in Ireland: Provided always, that nothing herein-before contained shall be deemed to forbid the Maintenance and Repair of any Railway constructed before the passing of this Act on any Gauge other than those herein-before specified, or to forbid the laying of new Rails on the same Gauge on which such Railway is constructed within the Limits of Deviation authorized by the several Acts under the Authority of which such Railways are severally constructed."
18th August 1846
Gauge of Railways Act
1st September 1892
Facsimile Letter to Persons Engaged in Conversion of Gauge
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