History Of Brighton And Environs - Online Book

From The Earliest Known Period To The Present Time.

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After the opening of the Railway to Newhaven, December 6th, 1847, these Packets were superseded by others in connection with the Railway Company, built expressly for this traffic, with all the modern im­provements, to accelerate their speed from this port to Dieppe, generally accomplishing the journey in five or six hours, and a tidal service in the summer; but the communication with the opposite coast continued throughout the year, and with this increased facility and accommodation the traffic has increased to an enormous extent, there having been upwards of a thousand passengers embarked and disembarked in a day from the port of Newhaven. The railway trains run in conjunction with the packets on both sides of the Channel, and the whole distance from London to Paris and vice-versa may be accom­plished in twelve hours. This route, from the subjoined letter written by Lord Buckhurst,* the Lord High Treasurer, to Mr Secretary Cecil, in 1600, evidently shews it has been in use for centuries, and will be interesting, as exhibiting the contrast between the locomotion of the time of Queen Elizabeth and that of the present day, inasmuch as the journey between the two ports then occupied as many days as it now does hours:—
" Sir,—This enclosed letter came to me this forenone, about xi of the clock. By this you may see that the Governour of Diepe landed at Newhaven in Sussex yesterday being thursday in the afternone, having wtu him a 100 persons, and lodged the same night at Lewis and purposed to be gon the next day, being this friday morning by 5 of the clock. This Gentleman, Mr Shurleyf being a Justis of peace I dout not but will do his best to
• Unquestionably the Lord Buckhurst who was one of the Com­missioners to settle the differences between the seamen and landsmen in this town many years before, and alluded to in the chapter on " Ancient Customs."
t Probably J. Shirely, Esq., of the Friars, in Lewes.
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