European Railways Time Periods (Epochs)

The European Railways can be broken down into five time periods commonly referred to as Epochs.

Epoch Approximate dates
Epoch I 1835 - 1925
Epoch II 1925 - 1945
Epoch III 1945 - 1970
Epoch IV 1970 - 1990
Epoch V 1990 - 2006
Epoch VI 2006 to present

UK Railways Time Periods (Eras)

Era Approximate dates
Era 1 Pioneering (1804 - 1875)
Era 2 Pre-Grouping (1875 - 1922)
Era 3 The Big Four (1923-1947)
Era 4 British Railways Steam Era (Early Crest) (1948-1956)
Era 5 British Railways (Late Crest) (1957-1966)
Era 6 British Rail Corporate Pre-TOPS (1967-1971)
Era 7 British Rail Corporate Blue Post-TOPS (1971-1982)
Era 8 British Rail Sectorisation (1982-1994)
Era 9 Post privatisation (1995 onwards)

European Railways Symbols

List of abbreviations for some common European Railways

BLS The largest of the private Swiss Railways
BR The UK National Rail network
CFL The National Railway of Luxembourg
DB The German Federal Railways until 1992
DBAG The German Railways Inc. after 1992
DRG The German Railways before WW II
DR The East German Railways from WW II until the reunification in 1989
DSB The Danish National Railways
FS The Italian Federal Railways
K.Bay.Sts.B. The Royal Bavarian Railways
K.P.E.V. The Prussian Railways.
NS The Netherlands State Railways
OBB The Austrian Federal Railways
RENFE The Spanish National Railways
SBB The Swiss Federal Railways
SJ The Swedish Railways
SNCB The Belgian National Railways
SNCF The French National Railways
SOB The South East Railways of Switzerland

Modern Era Train Symbols

The modern European Railways also use symbols to identify the type of train.

EC EuroCity - International Trains
FD Long Distance Express
IC InterCity
ICE InterCity Express
IR InterRegional
S-Bahn - Schnell-Bahn Fast Commuter Trains