Cowes and Newport join the railway age

Towns joined by railway | 1862 | Period: Victorian

The first conventional steam railway line to open on the Island was from Cowes to Newport in 1862.

The Cowes & Newport Railway Company began construction of the line in 1859 after an enabling Act of Parliament was passed earlier that year.

Shortly after this, the Isle of Wight Railway Company built its initial line from Ryde to Shanklin, opening in 1864. In the same year, horse-drawn trams began running along Ryde Pier, connecting steamer services to the town. The Company opened an extension of its main line to reach Ventnor in 1866 and in 1871; the Ryde tramway was extended to meet the railway line at Ryde St John's Road.