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Uganda Railways


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My wife and I are in Uganda at the moment (9th May 2018), I have been here a number of times before. The national railway system is metre-gauge. I hope this first post is of interest to members of this forum.

 

https://rogerfarnworth.wordpress.com/2018/05/09/uganda-railways-part-1

 

Other posts about the trip, but not railway related, can be found on this link:

 

https://rogerfarnworth.wordpress.com/category/uganda

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Some of the Derby built Mk.II based coachs shown in this picture.

Lovely sir.

Where did it all go wrong, we used to export kit around the world.

You may wish to google 'EMU100' if you're not aware, basically BREL sorted Taiwan's railway out via these fine mk2 based units.

They weren't without their teething troubles (like most things) but these units are highly revered within the Taiwan rail community and at least one set does occasional runs from time to time.

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The next two posts cover the length of the old Uganda Railway to Kisumu and Butere. Originally, this line was of significant strategic importance. Trains along the line provided access to Lake Victoria and the inland steamers that then provided access to the Great Lakes region and to Kampala via Port Bell.

 

The construction of the line from Nakuru to Kampala and beyond changed thing significantly and the old main line became a branch-line and has seen little traffic over recent years.

 

https://rogerfarnworth.wordpress.com/2018/05/25/uganda-railways-part-10-west-of-nakuru-the-line-to-kisumu

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Before we return to Nakuru to follow the main line towards Kampala, one further post about the Kisumu line. There was a short branch which left the Kisumu to Nakuru line within the confines of Kisumu city. This post focusses on that line.

 


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We really are now almost in Uganda! The is the last post focussing on the Uganda Railway in Kenya. It takes us from Eldoret to the border with Uganda at Malaba.

 

Sadly, in this post there is little evidence of locomotives. The line has seen little use over the years . I was very fortunate to be able to travel 1st Class all the way from Mombasa to Kampala in 1994. I had no idea at the time how fragile that service was.

 

https://rogerfarnworth.wordpress.com/2018/05/28/uganda-railways-part-14-eldoret-to-malaba

Edited by rogerfarnworth
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With this post we have crossed the border between Kenya and Uganda. Just across the border in Tororo the mainline divides to give a Kampala/Kasese route via Jinja, and a Pakwach and Aria route via Soroti. The more northerly route through Soroti was perceived as the branch but it has been the route which has been refurbished first (in 2013).

 

We will follow the branch first.

 

https://rogerfarnworth.wordpress.com/2018/06/01/uganda-railways-part-15-malaba-to-soroti.

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We have now returned to the mainline at Tororo and are heading on toward Kampala.

 

The story continues .... "We leave Tororo is a north-westerly direction following the contours on the north side of the Nagongera Road as far as Achilet (about 5 kilometres outside of Tororo). For the next 10 kilometres the railway stays north of the road until reaching Nagongera, or Nagongora, .............."

 

https://rogerfarnworth.wordpress.com/2018/06/05/uganda-railways-part-18-tororo-to-jinja

 

Of interest is the number of railway lines on the map between Tororo and Jinja. There is by far the greatest density of lines in Uganda.

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The journey continues from Jinja to Kampala .......

 

“The Nile River Bridge at Jinja was built in the late 1920s. It is perhaps the iconic structure for the whole of the metre-gauge railway system from Mombasa to Kasese.

 

The first railway in Uganda ran from Jinja to Namasagali on the Victoria Nile where a steamer service ran on to Masindi Port. From there passengers travelled by road through Masindi to Butiaba on Lake Albert. From there they could travel on by steamer to the Belgian Congo or north to Juba in the Sudan.

 

Train passengers from Kenya reached Uganda by steamer from the railhead at Kisumu and across Lake Victoria to Entebbe or Port Bell. In the mid 1920s the main line in Kenya was extended from Nakuru through Eldoret, and Tororo to Mbulamuti where it met up with the original Jinja to Namasagali line. The new line to Kampala then crossed the Nile at Jinja by a bridge carrying both the railway and a roadway underneath.”

 

https://rogerfarnworth.wordpress.com/2018/06/07/uganda-railways-part-19-jinja-to-kampala

 

The last part of my own journey to Kampala by train in 1994 commenced once a derailed freight train had been rerailed ahead of us and the passenger train was ‘given the road'. We had waited for over 6 hours at Jinja Railway Station. Travelling by rail was unreliable but really enjoyable!!

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