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Top railway programmes on TV

For all you train spotters and railway enthusiasts out there, we’ve got your TV plans sorted. From steam trains to scenic railways, we’ve put together a list of the top railway programmes, train documentaries and the top train travel TV to watch right now. The best bit? They’re all free to watch on Freesat, so save this article to stay up to date with what railway themed telly will be hitting your screens. All aboard! 🚂

Railway Murders 

Yesterday, Sunday 2nd May starting at 11am  

steam train going over bridge


This brand-new documentary series investigates some of the most notorious and surprising murders taking place on the British railways. From a wealthy banker in 1864 to a police officer murdered in the line of duty and a Polish Countess attacked at Gloucester Road Tube station, this series explores historical murders going as far back as the mid-1800s. Watch the whole first season stripped through the day on Sunday 2nd May starting at 11am, or watch Railway Murders on UKTV Play.  

If you’re as interested in true crime as you are railways, check out our best crime series on now.  

Great British Railway Journeys, S12 

BBC Two, Weeknights at 6:30pm 

Michael Portillo in front of steam train


Follow Michael Portillo in season 12 of the documentary series as he travels the country on iconic and picturesque train journeys, stopping to take in the sites and soak up the local culture along the way. Every weeknight at 6:30pm on BBC Two, or watch on BBC iPlayer.   

Great Continental Railway Journeys 

Yesterday, Weeknights at 7pm 

michael portillo leading out of train with mountains in background


Following his 1913 Bradshaw railway guide, join Michael Portillo as he travels across Europe by rail, from Rome to North Africa and beyond. Watch on weeknights at 7pm or on UKTV Play.  

The Architecture the Railways Built 

Watch on UKTV Play 

Tim Dunn in front of railway bridge


This exciting new series explores some of the UK and Europe’s most stunning architecture lining the railway network. Transport historian and architecture enthusiast, Tim Dunn, guides you through capital cities and small rural stations to look at some of the more unique and radically designed station buildings across Europe. Watch now on UKTV Play.  

World’s Most Scenic Railway Journeys 

Watch on My5 

village on cliff in italy


Tune in as Bill Nighy narrates epic train journeys across some of the world’s most beautiful and extreme terrains. From the mountains of Canada to Lapland’s Northern lights, Scotland’s highlands and Sri Lanka’s Victorian railways, view the world by train on My5.  

Chris Tarrant: Extreme Railways 

Yesterday, Weekdays at 1pm 

chris tarrant on a train


Follow Chris Tarrant on trips by rail through some of the world’s most challenging terrains. From the Congo to Transylvania, war zones, mountains and jungles, discover this history of these unique journeys by rail. Now on its sixth season, you can jump aboard on weekdays at 1pm or on UKTV Play.  

The Station: Trouble on the Tracks 

STV, Tuesdays at 11:40pm 

rail workers on train tracks


The series continues by following two of the nation's biggest stations, Birmingham and Euston. Watch on Tuesday nights on STV or catch up on STV Player.  

Walking Britain’s Lost Railways with Rob Bell 

Watch on My5 

rob bell beside train


Join Rob Bell for a whole new season of Walking Britain’s Lost Railways as he follows the hidden and abandoned railway lines which once connected the country and made Britain a hub of industry. Walk the railways with Rob Bell on My5.   

Railways For Ever!  

Talking Pictures TV, 20th May at 7:50pm 

Watch as the last steam train crosses the Pennines on August 11th 1968, the official end of regular mainline steam operation.  

Japan Railway Journal 

NHK World Japan, Thursdays at 9:30pm 

Tune in to take a closer look at Japan’s railways, from the Moka Railway north of Tokyo famous steam locomotive to Tokyo’s busy trainlines. 

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