The first full-scale working steam engine train was designed and built by Richard Trevithick and financed by Samuel Homfray. However, the idea originated around 1550 with German wagonways, wooden tracks that made moving heavy carts easier.
The Trevithick engine was designed work on tramways instead of rails. George Stephenson, an inventor and autodidact, built the first railway steam engine, earning him the nickname "Father of Railways." His innovation revolutionized travel, making rapid transportation from one end of England to the other available and affordable for most people in Britain. Stephenson's railway innovations included his well-designed engine and dozens of innovations for the railway itself, including the use of iron instead of wooden tracks and techniques for navigating challenging terrain such as bogs and hills.