Railway Regulation Act 1840

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The Railway Regulation Act 1840[1]
Long title An Act for regulating Railways.
Citation 3 & 4 Vict c 97
Royal assent 10 August 1840
Text of statute as originally enacted
Revised text of statute as amended

The Railway Regulation Act 1840 (3 & 4 Vict c 97) is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. It brought regulation to the fast-growing railway industry in the United Kingdom.

It is one of the Railway Regulation Acts 1840 to 1893.[2]

The Railways Department of the Board of Trade (the predecessor of Her Majesty's Railway Inspectorate) was created to fulfil this task.


Measures contained in the Act were;

  • No railway to be opened without notice to the Board of Trade
  • Returns to be made by railway companies
  • Appointment of Board of Trade railway inspectors
  • Railway byelaws to be approved by the Board
  • Prohibition of drunkenness by railway employees
  • Prohibition of obstruction of the railway
  • Prohibition of trespass on railways

As of 2011, Section 16 of the Act, For punishment of persons obstructing the officers of any railway company, or trespassing upon any railway remains in force, as subsequently amended. The remainder has been repealed and replaced.


  1. ^ The citation of this Act by this short title was authorised by section 1 of, and the first schedule to, the Short Titles Act 1896. Due to the repeal of those provisions it is now authorised by section 19(2) of the Interpretation Act 1978.
  2. ^ The Short Titles Act 1896, section 2(1) and Schedule 2

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