The North Eastern Railway was a railway company which was founded in 1854, operating in the Yorkshire, County Durham and Northumberland areas. It brought together a number of lines, such as the York, Newcastle & Berwick Railway, the Leeds Northern Railway and the York & North Railway.
The first York railway station had opened in 1839, with a larger station built inside the city walls in 1841. NER designed and the new York station, which was the largest world when it opened in 1877.
The headquarters of the railway were at York, and much of the railway’s wealth was created in carrying freight such as coal. In 1904 the company opened the first section of the Tyneside electrification, one of the earliest companies in the world to do so. A new Head Office building for NER was started in 1904, designed by Horace Field and William Bell, and was completed in 1906.
In 1923 NER was merged into the larger grouping of London and North Eastern Railway. The LNER, the second largest of the big four railway companies created by Lloyd George’s railway reorganisation existed until January 1948, when the service was nationalised.