National Railway Museum’s Crime Facts…

  • In 1864 the notorious murder of Thomas Briggs by Franz Muller in a closed carriage resulted in railways introducing small windows (peep holes) in carriage walls to allow passengers in adjacent carriages to see in. These where nicknamed ‘Muller’s Lights’
  • Due to a rise in pickpockets in the late 19th century, first class women travellers would hold handmade handbags made from the same fabric as their coats and clutch them under their arms disguising them from thieves. The bags had two separate compartments for pocket timetables, tickets and change
  • The British Transport Police are the oldest police force in Britain after being formed in 1826, three years before the metropolitan force was first established in London
  • The railways were bound by the Carriers Act of 1830, which meant they had to carry certain goods as required and to pay compensation for any goods that became damaged or stolen
  • Police dogs were introduced by the British Transport Railway police in 1908 by the North-Eastern Railway, the first force to do so
  • Most constables carried elaborately painted truncheons bearing the crest of the Railway Company. Inspectors carried a brass or ivory ‘tipstaff’ surmounted by a crown
  • Watches, flags and lamps were issued to each man working on the tracks (the Ulster Railway Police were even issued with a shovel and a wheelbarrow to help remove obstructions from the line)
  • The National Railway Museum Collection includes the ‘Murder Carriage’ a model built for the trial of George Henry Hill (alias George Parker) in 1901. He was accused of murdering salesman William Pearson on the LSWR Southampton – London train
  • As well as the National Rail Network, the British Transport Police has jurisdiction on a number of other railway networks including the London Underground, the Glasgow Subway and the Emirates Air Line
  • The “Agatha Christie” is the most popular cocktail on the Orient Express. It consists of 12 secret ingredients, one for each of the 12 suspects in Murder on the Orient Express