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My Recent Writing

  • February 2021 newsletter

    Oddly, in this short newsletter, I am going to promote someone else’s book. This is because I think Peter Walker’s The Miracle Pill should be on the desk of every politician, medical practitioner and teacher.  The pill, of course, is not a little capsule of chemicals but rather something rather different: exercise. In fact, Walker’s concise manifesto to make the nation healthier, longer–lived and, as a by product, wealthier,...

  • Treasury needs lesson in GCSE economics

    Every year, rail fares go up and every year, the proposed increase in fuel duty is shelved. This year was expected to be different: the railways have taken a battering with the biggest collapse in passenger numbers since the first train trundled along the Liverpool & Manchester Railway in 1830. Today, passenger numbers are less than a quarter of 2019 levels. In contrast, the roads have clogged up with...

  • New Statesman letter: Musk’s achilles heel

    Elon Musk may, as Will Dunn, suggests ‘be a more interesting person to occupy capitalism’s top spot’ but watch out for his downfall. While his space rocket development has been successful thanks to huge government payments, his promises about producing a fully driverless car have been broken so many times he will eventually lose credibility. The very name of the ‘Autopilot’ software installed in Teslas is misleading since drivers...

  • The driverless car revolution that keeps on not coming

    In early January, the  Department for Transport (DfT) boasted that the UK “was on the cusp of a transport revolution” with the self-driving vehicles market  expected to reach £42bn by 2035. The optimistic estimate came from a report from the   “Catapult” programme which is funded by the government’s Innovate UK programme and has already sucked up £200m of taxpayers money to promote the development of autonomous vehicles. In fact...

  • Rail 922: How to recreate a joined-up railway

    In recent weeks I have interviewed numerous ex-BR managers for my new book which is about the successes and failures of the near half century of public ownership of the railways. The book, actually commissioned a year ago, could not be better timed. Whatever the future pattern of the pandemic, there is no doubt that there will not be a return to the old way of running the railways...

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About Christian Wolmar

Christian Wolmar is an award winning writer and broadcaster specialising in transport and is the author of a series of books on railway history. He was Labour's candidate for the 2016 Richmond Park & North Kingston by-election and also ran to be Labour's candidate in the last London mayoral election. Read more >>

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RT @Kevin_J_Brady Such a beautiful day & an almost unbelievable number of cyclists out on the lanes. Turns out if you provide the infrastructure; in they come! 🥳❤️🚲 Particularly delighted to see so many families with kids. The idea of that even a short while ago was impossible to imagine. pic.twitter.com/DRlaD77Gmx

Yesterday

Online Column: Christian Says...