Monday 4 October 2004 12.08pm
Is this what you're asking about? Link below is to a transcript of a Radio 4 piece in 2001
The Crystal Palace atmospheric railway
"The Crystal Palace atmospheric or pneumatic railway was built in 1864 at the lower end of the Crystal Palace Park, and was working for a matter of months. It ran for about 600 yards in a 10-ft diameter brick tunnel between the Sydenham and Penge gates to the Park. The tunnel had a gradient of one in 15 and the railway went round in a sharp curve. It had a coach which could seat 35, and a sliding door at each end. There was a remote steam engine coupled to a fan. The railway had a collar of bristles which made it airtight and enabled the coach to be sucked along - at a speed of probably 25 mph. The trip apparently cost sixpence. The engineer was Thomas Webster Rammell, a man behind other pneumatic railway experiments in London. In fact his serious purpose was to design a pneumatic railway to go from Waterloo to Whitehall under the Thames. "
weird but wonderful....