The Romance of the Railway

Explorations by rail and of railway inspired architecture.

A collection of memories related to the Malayan Railway and explorations around the active and abandoned lines in Singapore can be found on these pages: “Journeys through Tanjong Pagar” and “Support the Green Corridor”.

A stroll around Makkasan

A walk around the Makkasan area of Bangkok which is synonymous with the State Railways of Thailand, being where the main train depot is located at. Along with the depot, there is the old Makkasan station which was built mainly to serve railway workers in Bangkok.

The Bridge over the River Kwai

Two visits in 1984 and in 2006 to the Bridge over the River Kwai in Kanchanaburi, Thailand, long associated with the notorious Death Railway. The steel truss bridge is the second bridge built to replace the one that was the subject of the movie “The Bridge on the River Kwai”.

The KL Railway Administration Building

A Arthur Benison Hubback masterpiece which features significant Moorish influence. Hubback worked under the architect of Sultan Abdul Samad Building, Arthur Charles Alfred Norman and besides being responsible for architecture in KL, he also worked on the Ipoh Railway Station”.

The old KL Railway Station

The station, another one of A B Hubback’s magnificent works of architecture, with a a grandeur fitting of an old world railway terminal, complements another of Hubback’s work, the Railway Administration Building, just across what is now Jalan Sultan Hishamuddin (Victory Avenue prior to independence)”.

The “Taj Mahal” of Ipoh

Another of A B Hubback’s works and completed in 1917 to provide a station “worthy of the town”, what was described as a “palatial station and hotel” is fondly referred to as the “Taj Mahal of Ipoh” by Ipoh residents. The station is the only one of the original three with station hotels to still have a hotel operating on its premises.

The Malaysian “Settlement” in Singapore

Spooner Road in Kampung Baru, Singapore is where KTM has quarters for their staff working in Singapore. Spooner Road is named after Charles Edwin Spooner, the first General Manager of the FMS Railway. Spooner Road was part of the development around Tanjong Pagar during the Railway Deviation of 1932 which gave us the station.

The other Spooner Road

Besides the Spooner Road in Singapore there were at least two other Spooner Roads, one in KL and the other in Ipoh that were very much associated with the Railway. The one in Ipoh, Jalan Spooner, still bears evidence of being associated with the railway.

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