- Title: London's underground mail rail re-opens after 14 years
- Date: 8th August 2017
- Summary: LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM (AUGUST 7, 2017) (REUTERS) (SOUNDBITE) (English) DIRECTOR OF THE POSTAL MUSEUM AND MAIL RAIL ADRIAN STEEL, SAYING: "The Mail rail originally came about because mail was being delayed in London due to congestion in the streets above us. And, of course, bearing in mind this is the time of the horse and cart and the omnibus and so on, very little organisation of the roads, and also at that time all of the mail came through London rather like the railway network does now."
- Embargoed: 22nd August 2017 15:33
- Keywords: Postal Museum London Mail Rail
- Location: LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM / UNIDENTIFIED FILM LOCATIONS
- City: LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM / UNIDENTIFIED FILM LOCATIONS
- Country: United Kingdom
- Topics: Human Interest / Brights / Odd News,Society/Social Issues
- Reuters ID: LVA0046TANNFD
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: EDITORS PLEASE NOTE: PART MUTE AND CONTAINS MATERIAL ORIGINALLY 4:3
A never seen before underground mail network is set to open to public in London, 14 years after it closed down.
The hidden maze of tunnels which opened in 1927 reportedly boasted the first electric-powered rail lines in the world. The pioneer service was set up to try and beat congested London roads which in the 1920s were filled with horse and carts. Shut in 2003, the Mail Rail had eight stations in its heyday and 6.5 miles of track going from Paddington (west London) to Whitechapel (east London).
The small red trains, which were originally mainly driverless and exclusively for the transportation of parcels and letters moved post between the main London sorting offices. Today the revamped network will carry people and have a driver for the first time.
The 15-minute round trip, using special tourist trains, will move around the museum area while the rest of the long network will remain shut.
The initiative came from Postal Heritage Trust, a charity organization which launched the new Postal Museum last July at a disused printing factory in Clerkenwell.
The Mail Rail is set to open to tourists on September 4 it's located across the street from the new museum and underneath the Mount Pleasant Royal Mail sorting office.
"Royal Mail still has an obligation to maintain the whole of the tunnel network under London under the legislation that was introduced to build mail rail a 100 years ago - and they still maintain a couple of engineers on their staff to do just that", told Reuters Adrian Steel, director of the Postal Museum and Mail Rail.
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