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Combat Trains   

Series 1: 8x60 | HD | 2015
Production Company
Woodcut Media
Primary Broadcaster
History Channel UK

Trains have played a crucial role in the war effort in the major conflicts of the past 150 years. These trains were a vital cog in the military machine from carrying troops, to moving hospitals, to being transformed into actual weapons.

In this compelling series we tell the stories of these incredible trains… We combine expert interviews, authentic reconstruction, engineering graphics and archive, highlighting the extraordinary human stories alongside the engineering detail and military perspective. The stories are dramatic, exciting and filled with fascinating historical detail.

Each of these incredible stories are set against a backdrop of conflict and we put the events into context. In addition to the stories of the trains we learn more about the military, political and domestic battles happening at the time.

Episode 1: The First Railroad War

This episode tells the story of the Great Locomotive Chase - an attempt by Northern spies to steal the locomotive The General. The conflict that divided America helped its unification - the lessons learnt in the war were used to build the Transcontinental Railroad that opened four years after the fighting ceased.

Episode 2: The Death Railway

Veterans and historians of the Thai-Burma railway tell the story of its construction. Shot on location, this episode describes the building of one of the harshest sections of the line - Hellfire Pass, and seeks to explain cruelty of the Japanese railway engineers.

Episode 8: Second World War: Homefront

In the Second World War, trains operating in Britain came into their own - bringing troops back home after the humiliation of Dunkirk, as well as taking hundreds of thousands of city children to safety. The programme interviews eye-witnesses to both railway adventures, and discovers the disused Tube station where the evacuations were coordinated.