The rapid growth of the flax industry meant there was an increasing demand from the producers to be able to export their produce out of the area, particularly to Belfast.
Obviously investors thought it to be an attractive business venture as £100,000 was raised from issuing 7,500 shares at £10 each and a grant of £25,000 was awarded by the Board of Works. In addition the Skinners Company made a donation of £20,000 because of the benefits to be realised in their estate in Dungiven. As a result the Limavady and Dungiven Railway Company saw their line open in July 1883. The Chairman of the Board was Samuel Martin Macrory, grandfather of Sir Patrick Macrory, Chairman of the Review Body on Local Government.
LIMAVADY STATION—OPENING DAY
Engineers on the line failed to keep a close enough eye on the construction of Limavady Station as indicated by the opening day debacle. The first train carried many dignitaries from near and far to be greeted by a brass band on arrival. However, they had not bargained on the station platform being some inches higher than bottom of the carriage doors. As a result the passengers had to dismount in an undignified manner unto the track from the other side of the train.
LIMAVADY – DUNGIVEN OPENING DAY.
Another disaster! On its first journey, in beautiful weather, the train was filled with those from the higher echelons of society. Because of the fine conditions they travelled in open carriages with the ladies attired in summer dresses. They had not bargained on the engine producing so much black soot which made a sorry mess of their finery.