Historic Transport Dataset


The Commission's Historic Transport Dataset provides select data on Britain's transport sector spanning back as far as 1870.

Published: Tagged: Transport


The Commission sought to improve its understanding of the long run development of the transport sector in Britain through the curation of a historical transport dataset.

The Commission asked Dr Oliver Dunn of the University of Cambridge to look for, and curate, transport statistics that have to-date not been made accessible online. Dr Dunn uncovered data on railways, tramways and light rail, roads, vehicles in use, and civil aviation, reaching as far back as 1870. The study of historical data can provide valuable insights into the how our use of transport and related infrastructure has changed over time and can provide context to current transport statistics. The data covers England, Scotland, Wales and, in some early cases, Ireland. We have included more recent data to extend the historic time series to current times, where consistent data is available. All data on these pages, and more, is available to download via the button at the bottom of this page.

Historic transport data

All of the transport data shown above, and more, is available to download here.

Download data files

Historical Transport Data Report

The report prepared by Dr Oliver Dunn for the Commission, includes additional detail and background information supporting the datasets shared above.

Download report

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