On this day:
In 1803 the world’s first public railway opened. The Surrey Iron Railway linked Wandsworth and Croydon, which at that time were in Surrey. It was a toll railway on which goods carriers were pulled by horses. The main goods carried were coal and… manure. The railway was short lived and became increasingly unused with the opening of a canal between Croydon and London and closed in 1846. However, some of the route is still used by the London Tramlink.
Also on this day The Reading Mercury reported what it called “The greatest cricket match that was played in this part of England.” This was the first ever record of women’s cricket. The match took place … near Guildford (Gosden Common) between “11 maids of Bramley and 11 maids of Hambledon”. The year.. was 1745. Hambledon won with 127 runs to Bramley’s 119. Which was strange because the match consisted entirely of maiden overs.