Irish North Western Railway
|Predecessors||Dundalk and Enniskillen Railway|
|Successors||Great Northern Railway (Ireland)|
|Area served||Co. Cavan, Fermanagh, Co. Londonderry, Co. Donegal, Co. Louth, Co. Monaghan, Co. Tyrone|
The company was founded as the Dundalk and Enniskillen Railway (D&ER) and opened the first section of its line, from Dundalk Quay Street to Castleblayney, in 1849. In Dundalk the D&ER line crossed the Dublin and Belfast Junction Railway main line, which was completed between Drogheda and its own separate Dundalk station in the same year.
The D&ER extended westwards, reaching Ballybay in 1854, Newbliss in 1855 and Lisbellaw in 1858. In 1859 the D&ER reached Enniskillen where it connected with the Londonderry and Enniskillen Railway (L&ER). The L&ER had been completed in 1854 but had been unprofitable, so in 1860 it leased its line in perpetuity to the D&ER. This gave the D&ER a direct route between Dundalk and Londonderry Foyle Road.
In 1862 the INW opened a branch from Clones southwards to Cavan. In the same year the company renamed itself the Irish North Western Railway. In 1863 the Ulster Railway reached Clones where it made a junction with the INW. In 1868 the Enniskillen and Bundoran Railway opened between Bundoran Junction and Bundoran, and contracted the INW to operate its line.
The GNR operated the line between Dundalk and Enniskillen until 1957, when the Government of Northern Ireland made the GNR Board close all cross-border lines except the Dublin and Belfast Junction Railway main line. Córas Iompair Éireann continued a freight service between Dundalk and Clones for a few years, but withdrew this and closed the line in 1960.
- Baker, Michael H.C. (1972). Irish Railways since 1916. London: Ian Allan. pp. 153, 207. ISBN 0-7110-0282-7.
- Dewick, Tony (2002). Complete Atlas of Railway Station Names. Hersham: Ian Allan Publishing. maps 57, 58, 60. ISBN 0-7110-2798-6.
- FitzGerald, J.D. (1995). The Derry Road. Colourpoint Transport 2. Gortrush: Colourpoint Press. ISBN 1-898392-09-9.
- Hajducki, S. Maxwell (1974). A Railway Atlas of Ireland. Newton Abbott: David & Charles. ISBN 0-7153-5167-2.
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