Stage Coaches

in the 1820s


The 1820's were the heyday of the stage coach. The coming of the turnpikes and later tar macadam surfaces improved the roads and made faster journeys possible.  The growth of the Industrial Revolution meant that more goods and people would be travelling, However the late 1830s saw the coming of the train, and places such as Tring - on the main London to Birmingham railway line saw a significant drop in trade after the opening of the railway in 1837.

The follow trade directory extract, the press cuttings provide some background information on two coaches that ran through Tring - The Young Pilot and the Good Intent.

COACHES [1828/9]

To LONDON, from Tring, the Young Pilot, from the Rose and Crown, at seven in the morning, to the Kings Arms, Holborn Bridge. The Good Intent, from the Bell, at seven in the morning, to the Old George, Snowhill,.

To AYLESBURY, at six in the evening.

To BICESTER, through Aylesbury, at twelve at noon, from the Rose and Crown.

To KIDDERMINSTER, through Aylesbury, Bicester, &c. from the Bell, on Tuesday, Thursday, & Saturday at ten in the morning.



This court case relates to an incident in Berkhamsted High Street in July 1825.

Pullen was a horse-keeper of horses belonging to one of the Tring stage coaches, the "Good Intent" which was picking up a passenger, possibly from the Kings Arms.

Hearn was driving the other Tring coach, the "Young Pilot" through Berkhamsted  "rapidly" and knocked down Pullen and seriously injured him

[I have not yet succeeded in identifying Pullen & Hearn].

The Times, 15th December, 1825

Joseph Tomkins was driving the stage coach "Good Intent" from London to Tring in October 1825 and was accused by Samuel Lyons of Sheffield of being overloaded with 12 outside passengers and luggage on the roof. Joseph was found not guilty on a technicality.

The Watford magistrates included Robert Clutterbuck.

Joseph Tomkins, 35, Journeyman Tailor, in Akeman Street, Tring


Morning Post, 7th November, 1825


This case was similar to the last one in that the "Good Intent" from Tring arrived in  London with more than 10 outside passengers plus three bags of straw plait as luggage. The driver said he had been carrying straw plait in this way for three years without complaint, and the case was dismissed.

Bury & Norwich Post, 11th April, 1826

November 2014   Page created