A requiem for the overnight sleeper – and a European way of life | Andrew Martin

A requiem for the overnight sleeper – and a European way of life | Andrew Martin

The cross-border overnight train services are dying out. We are losing a way to forge links with the neighbours just when we need them the most

If you read European railway timetables from the decades before Britain joined the EU, you notice how much more foreign “the continent” seemed to be. In the 1960s, the Thomas Cook Continental Timetable was prefaced by “Visa requirements”, closely followed by “Fees for obtaining visas”, and relevant extracts from the passport regulations. Only then is the prospective traveller directed to the trains, the lists of which are footnoted with details of exotic operational practices: “At Hendaye, the Paris-Lisbon couchettes are jacked up to change the bogies, on account of the difference in track gauge between France and Spain.”

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Source: Guardian Transport

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