Title

Transport

RIS ID

10332

Publication Details

This chapter was originally published as: Ville, S, Transport, in R. Floud and P. Johnson (eds) The Cambridge Economic History of Modern Britain, 2004, 3rd edition, 295-331. Copyright 2004 Cambridge University Press.

Abstract

This chapter describes the process of transport growth and development in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Britain, including its political, organisational and developmental impact. Transport systems (including communications) move people, goods and information. The large size and capital-intensive nature of transport operations caused unprecedented organisational challenges for companies. The identification of transport as a form of social overhead capital, supporting production across the economy, helps account for its broad-ranging impact on economic development. In this role transport contributed to the efficient allocation of resources over space, thereby promoting competition between producers, and providing information about alternative consumption possibilities to consumers.

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