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The Railway Mission is a British mission devoted to the rail industry. It was founded in 1881 based in mission halls, and now operates a chaplaincy service. The UK Director of the Railway Mission is the Rev Liam Johnston [1], who is responsible for the day to day work of the chaplains across the country.

The Railway Mission is a care provider to the rail industry and British Transport Police through the provision of The National Rail Chaplaincy Service (NRCS). Operating in partnership with London City Mission, the Railway Mission is the principal partner in the NRCS which provides around 30 mainly fulltime chaplains to the Railways enabling pastoral care across the whole of the mainland UK railway network. The National Rail Chaplaincy Service (NRCS) is designed to enhance and support the chain of care provided by the rail businesses.

In the early days of the Railway Mission there were a number of mission halls at railway stations throughout the country, including one at Bury St. Edmunds, completed in 1900,[2] and a 1906 building at Salisbury.[3] An excellent example of a Railway Mission Hall is to be found at Norwich Prince of Wales Road Evangelical Church.[4]

Information About the Railway Mission

The Railway Mission ...

The British Railway Mission was founded in 1881 to communicate the Christian Gospel to the people working in the railway and associated industries. The railway industry has undergone dramatic changes over the years, but those who work throughout the modern network continue to face many challenges and problems in the 21st Century.
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Meeting People... The Railway Mission is not connected to any one particular Church and in today’s modern multi-cultural society, approaches each with sensitivity and care. Experienced Chaplains are strategically located throughout the railway industry. The Mission’s founding objective was – “the moral and spiritual advancement of railway employees of all ages”. That objective is still the driving force of the Mission as it seeks to provide independent confidential help and support to any rail industry employee, whether active or retired, at home, hospital or workplace. Whoever needs help, whenever that help is needed – a chaplain can be contacted wherever you are. Network prayer support groups have been setup in several rail centres. Here Christian railway workers can for fellowship, Bible study and to pray together for the industry and for the chaplains and their work. Throughout the year various day conferences, challenge walks and other events may be held

Meeting Needs... Marriage breakdown, domestic upheaval, serious illness, bereavement, alcohol and drug dependency – can all be deeply distressing and affect not only the quality of the life of the person concerned but also their families and work colleagues. Increasing stress may be experienced as the rail industry develops in the 21st Century. The work of the chaplains compliments that of the welfare services offered by employers. Together we seek to ensure that all employees receive the pastoral care that they need. The Railway Mission is a 7-day a week, 24 hours a day service – just like the rail industry itself. The Mission’s chaplains are called to emergency situations and can be relied upon to give careful, meaningful help and advice.

Supporting the Railway Mission... For more than a century successive railway managements from board to local level have given much encouragement to the work of the Railway Mission. The Mission gratefully acknowledges the help and support of the railway industry in its work. As well as support from the railways themselves the Railway Mission relies on funding from individual donations to finance its continuing work and expansion of the network of chaplains.

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Find Out More... The Railway Mission is a registered charity and is overseen by a voluntary group of directors known as the General Committee. The Executive Director is responsible for co-ordinating the work of the Mission’s chaplains and maintaining a close link with the leaders of many companies and businesses that make up the railway industry. The Mission Manager is responsible for the day-to-day administration of the Mission as well as communications work relating to the media and publicity. For further details about the railway mission contact:The Railway Mission PO Box 495 Bedford MK41 9WQ. Telephone and Fax: 01234 214790 E-mail: therailwaymission@fsmail.netThis e-mail address is being protected from spambots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it This e-mail address is being protected from spambots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

International Railway Mission (IRM)

International Railway Mission [5] is an interdenominational federation, which connects Christian fellowships with rail staff all over Europe. IRM holds every three years an inspiring conference and leisure week. Where the members and supporters of the different Railway Missions can exchange experiences and enjoy fellowship with other participants. Since the foundation of the IRM in 1926 nine countries have been added to the federation. The newest member is the Netherlands (2007). Contacts to North America and India are in progress.

  • Austria: Gemeinschaft Gläubiger Eisenbahner Österreichs [6]
  • Germany: Christliche Vereinigung Deutscher Eisenbahner - Eisenbahnermission (CVDE) [7]
  • Great Briatain: British Railway Mission (BRM)[8]
  • Nederland: Nederlands Netwerk van Christenen in die Spoorwegbranche (NNCS)[9]
  • Switzerland: Evangelisch christliches Verkehrspersonal der Schweiz (ECV)[10]
  • United States: Railroad Evangelistic Association [11]
  • Finland: Railway Mission Of Finland [12]


  2. BBC's Inside Out series
  3. Wiltshire County Council
  4. Norfolk Churches
  5. International Railway Mission

External links

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