1961 Dr Richard Beeching is appointed chairman of the British Railways Board. He is instructed to report on the condition of Britain's railways and recommend ways of improving it.
1962 There are about 17,481 miles of railway routes in Britain.
1963 Beeching recommends closing about of a third of Britain's loss-making rail network in a report entitled "The Re-shaping of British Railways".
The government acts on the recommendation, shutting down 5,000 miles of track and 2,000 stations on hundreds of loss-making local branch lines.
The days of the local steam train services are numbered as Britain's rail network starts to develop into a long distance high speed intercity commuter and freight service.
1964 There are about 15,991 miles of railway routes in Britain.
1967 There are about 13,172 miles of railway routes in Britain.