Thomas Hardy’s Early Career

Thomas Hardy, OM (2 June 1840 – 11 January 1928) was an English novelist and poet. A Victorian realist in the tradition of George Eliot, influenced both in his novels and in his poetry

Today marks ninety years since the death of Thomas Hardy, famed English novelist of the Victorian era.

His famous works include Far from the Madding Crowd (1874), The Mayor of Casterbridge (1886), Tess of the d’Urbervilles (1891), and Jude the Obscure (1895).

However, when Dorset-born Hardy first came to London, he was not making money as a writer.

St Pancras Railway Station London Victorian Era the year it opened 1868

In 1868

One of his jobs was to clear graves to make way for the massive new St Pancras railway station, which opened in 1868.

The Hardy Tree in the churchyard of St Pancras Old Church, growing up between gravestones moved there while Thomas Hardy was working here. London Victorian Era.

Headstones were moved for the build, and stacked together. Today, there is a famous spot called the “Hardy Tree“, where – for the past 1.5 centuries – a tree has grown around them.

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On this day: a Wintry Day in Cheshire

This is the Hartford & Greenbank railway station in Cheshire in England, photographed on a snowy, wintry day: the 28th of December, 1962. This was during the United Kingdom’s infamous winter of 1962-63.

The station, renamed simply Greenbank in 1973 to avoid confusion with another place, opened in 1870 as part of the West Cheshire Railway. It still serves the village of Hartford.

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On this day: an abandoned station in England

This image, dated the 17th of August, 1968, is of the abandoned Cole Green railway station in Hertfordshire, England.

The station provided transport on the Hertford and Welwyn Junction Railway from 1858. The final passenger service was on the 18th of June, 1951.

Cole_Green_Station,_Herts_geograph-2229883-by-David-HillasSituated in Station Road, Letty Green, this former station was on the railway line between Hertford (North) and Welwyn Garden Ci

On this day: the Bray Head railway accident

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On the 9th of August, 1867 sudden subsidence at Brandy Hole Viaduct caused a train to derail.

The location of the disaster was Bray Head, County Wicklow, Ireland. Four people died and twenty-five were injured.

The report into the disaster was published a few weeks later, and can be found in full HERE.

“The train to which this accident happened was the up train leaving Enniscorthy for Dublin, at 6.30 a.m. It consisted of an engine and tender, six carriages, of which the first was fitted with a break, and a guard’s break van. A porter acting as guard rode in this van at the rear of the train. It left Delgany about its proper time, 9.5 a.m., and was travelling slowly round Bray Head in obedience to orders which had been given to all drivers, and had nearly reached this wooden viaduct (called Brabazon corner in the details supplied by the engineer (the late Mr. Brunel), previous to the opening of the line in October 1855), when the acting guard says he got a knock in his van, looked out of the window, and saw the carriages hopping on the rails, and then he put on his break.”

On this day…

Wakefield Kirkgate railway station in West Yorkshire, England, photographed on the 29th of July, 1966.

Much of the original Victorian structure was removed in the 1970s, before it could be listed as a building of Historic Interest.

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