Road, Rail and Waterway: A History of Transport in Leicestershire

Ref: C2341207

The course will explore the ways in which Leicestershire's transport infrastructure has developed and changed from early times up to the year 1900. It will begin by considering the early tracks and roads of pre-Roman and Roman Britain, identifying significant later changes including the development of the turnpike road system. The focus will then turn to navigable waterways, demonstrating how a regional and more local network of waterways developed, linking Leicestershire to most quarters of England. Finally the early development of the railway system will be examined from the first railway in the county to the construction of the Great Central Railway art the end of the nineteenth century. Key figures who contributed to these developments will be introduced, set in the context of the times in which they lived.

Course aim

The aim of this course is to introduce participants to the development of Leicestershire's transport infrastructure up to the year 1900.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed
  • This course is for beginners
  • An interest in local history and transport will be an asset.

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Identify key periods in the development of Leicestershire's roads
  • Explain the reasons for the development of Leicestersershire's waterway network
  • Identify the most significsnt components of Leicestershire's railway system
  • Identify key players in these developments

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion

What else do I need to know?

  • A selection of materials and basic equipment will be provided but you are welcome to bring additional materials with you
  • Reading glasses will be an asset for exploring maps and other documents.

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading is required but research on the subject on the internet or in the library may be helpful

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • A number of local and national organoiisations exist which cater for those interested in local and transport history.

Download full course information sheet

Road, Rail and Waterway: A History of Transport in Leicestershire

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This course has been cancelled.


As a registered charity, and to meet our funders’ requirements, we need to check a few things with you before you book. Please could we ask that you check the list below to ensure you meet our basic criteria:

  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2018
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

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