Regimental History - 19th
The Band of the King’s Own
Royal Regiment at the Opening of the Liverpool and Manchester Railway
15th September 1830
On the morning of Wednesday, 15th September 1830, the station of the
Liverpool and Manchester Railway was the rendezvous of the nobility and
gentry who were to be the first passengers on a train between Liverpool
and Manchester. Never was there such an assemblage of rank, wealth,
beauty and fashion in the neighbourhood. The station’s entrance in Crown
Street was thronged from 9 o’clock until 10 am with passengers searching
for their places on one of the eight trains.
The large and elegant car constructed for the nobility, and the
accompanying cars for the Directors and the musicians were seen through
the lesser tunnel, where persons moving about at the far end appeared as
diminutive as if viewed through a concave glass. The effect was singular
and striking. In a short time all those cars were brought all the tunnel
into the yard, which then contained all the carriages which were to be
attached to the eight locomotive engines which were in readiness beyond
the tunnel in the great excavation at Edgehill.
By this time the area presented a beautiful spectacle, thirty three
carriages being filled by elegantly dressed persons, each train of
carriages being distinguished buy silk flags of different colours; the
band of the 4th King’s Own Regiment, stationed in the adjoining area,
playing military airs….
A few minutes before ten, the discharge of a gun and the cheers of the
assembly announced the arrival of the Duke of Wellington, who entered
the area with the Marquis and Marchioness of Salisbury and a number of
friends, the band playing “See the Conquering Hero comes.”
He returned the congratulations of the company, and in a few moments the
grand car, which he and the nobility and the principal gentry occupied,
and the cars attached to it, were permitted to proceed.
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