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February 16 , 2010

Paddington to Bristol


Incorporated by Act of Parliament in 1835 and completed just six years later, the Great Western Railway was a stupendous technical achievement. Extending for 118 miles from London to Bristol, this magnificently engineered line spanned Southern England from the Thames to the Bristol Channel, and was regarded as the first link in a chain of railways that would ultimately reach Cornwall, Wales and (via steamship) the south of Ireland. The railway, which is virtually flat and has no appreciable curves, has remained in use to the present day, carrying trains that travel from London to Bristol in just 1¾ hours. This present study examines the line from London to Bristol Temple Meads. Around fifty different locations have been included some of these are busy traffic centres such as Paddington, Southall and Reading, while others are wayside stations such as Pangbourne, Tilehurst and Wantage Road.

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