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Stagecoach Travels

This book explores the history of travelling by stagecoach from the sixteenth century through to the end of the nineteenth century, focusing on the heyday of around 1750-1850. It looks at the improvements in road maintenance and the turnpike system, which made faster travel practical and thereby led to a great increase in the use of stagecoaches, which would shuttle people along main routes from city to city (for example, the Great North Road from London to Edinburgh), stopping only to hitch a new set of horses to the stagecoach at designated refreshment areas. It explains who might travel in this way and why, and also shows the streamlining of the postal system through mail coaches, which would also carry passengers, The main routes, operators and infrastructure are explored, including the coaching inns that remain in so many towns today. Also explored are the practicalities of travelling, the dangers from Highwaymen such as Dick Turpin and the reasons for the decline of coaching - mainly the rise of railways.

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