Victorian London - Transport - Railways, above ground - Perception of - compared with coaching

To enter into a detail of these stupendous works belongs not to a volume of this sort; but as London already, in some degree, experiences the advantages of this mode of travelling, and as an extension of its benefits may shortly be expected, to those who may be desirous of obtaining the best information on the subject, we cannot do better than, as in the former; ease, refer them to works that well describe, and accurately illustrate the whole subject. To commence, Mogg's Hand-book for Railway Travellers, a neat pocket volume, constructed from official documents supplied by the several companies, and illustrated by maps, amply describes all the railroads at present in operation; while Mogg's Maps of England, varying in price from two pounds to five shillings, delineate, upon various scales, the different lines for which acts have already passed, as well as those in progress, and completed. Mogg's Map of the Country Forty-five Miles round London, a splendid work (to the extent of nearly fifty miles), beautifully illustrates this subject; it may also be consulted in other respects with great advantage; and, whether proceeding by road or railway, will be found a very delightful travelling companion. To professional men, to commercial travellers, and, indeed, to all to whom time is an object, railways offer temptations not to be resisted; expedition is, however, the only advantage attending that rapid rate of procedure; as a pleasurable mode of conveyance, when compared with stage-coach travelling, as at present conducted, impartially considered, it is decidedly inferior. The traveller, elevated upon the box or front seat of a well-appointed stage-coach, may be said to enjoy an enviable position; thus advantageously situated, in his progress through the country, he is gratified with a varied and perpetual succession of panoramic beauties, many of which leave lasting impressions on the mind, and give rise to observations, upon which, when hereafter reflecting, he will occasionally delight to dwell. To these, dark tunnels, deep cuttings, and a rapidity that, in running through the excavations, occasions an unpleasant sensation, present a striking contrast. Considered with regard to their general effect upon the country, it is impossible to deny that their establishment has been injurious to the agricultural interest while to the inn-holders of all descriptions, the towns and villages on the lines, and lastly to the roads themselves, they have proved ruinous.

Mogg's New Picture of London and Visitor's Guide to it Sights, 1844