A report on Great Western Railway

The interior of Brunel's train-shed at Temple Meads, the first Bristol terminus of the GWR, from an engraving by J. C. Bourne.
The Sonning Cutting in 1846
Route of the Great Western Railway on Cheffin's Map, 1850. The sweep to the north from Reading is clearly seen.
A broad-gauge train on mixed-gauge track
New corridor coaches on the Cornish Riviera Express
1923 saw the construction of the first of 171 Castle Class locomotives
Map of the system circa 1930
Maidenhead Railway Bridge
The Cheltenham Flyer was a GWR 'book for boys of all ages'.
One of the first road motors working a service from to The Lizard
Broad gauge Iron Duke Class locomotive Hirondelle, built in 1848
A coach in the chocolate and cream livery used from 1922
A GWR goods van in the grey livery used from about 1904. This one has end doors to allow motor cars to be loaded.
Baulk road track
Disc and crossbar signal
1934 camp coach brochure
Rain, Steam and Speed - The Great Western Railway, by Turner.
The Railway Station
A GWR seat at
The pedestrian crossing at Cockwood Steps, on the South Devon Main Line, retains a gate with GWR spear-type railings
The nameplate on First Great Western power car 43185
Isambard Kingdom Brunel's statue at Paddington station
A display commemorating Daniel Gooch at the National Railway Museum
Iron Duke's tender: Holly green with pea green lining
City of Truro: Middle Chrome green, orange lining and red frames
Nunney Castle: Middle Chrome green, orange lining and black frames
3850: Middle Chrome green, black frames but no lining

British railway company that linked London with the southwest and west of England, the West Midlands and most of Wales.

- Great Western Railway
The interior of Brunel's train-shed at Temple Meads, the first Bristol terminus of the GWR, from an engraving by J. C. Bourne.

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Brunel by the launching chains of the SS Great Eastern by Robert Howlett, 1857

Isambard Kingdom Brunel

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English civil engineer who is considered "one of the most ingenious and prolific figures in engineering history," "one of the 19th-century engineering giants," and "one of the greatest figures of the Industrial Revolution, [who] changed the face of the English landscape with his groundbreaking designs and ingenious constructions."

English civil engineer who is considered "one of the most ingenious and prolific figures in engineering history," "one of the 19th-century engineering giants," and "one of the greatest figures of the Industrial Revolution, [who] changed the face of the English landscape with his groundbreaking designs and ingenious constructions."

Brunel by the launching chains of the SS Great Eastern by Robert Howlett, 1857
Brunel by the launching chains of the SS Great Eastern by Robert Howlett, 1857
The Thames Tunnel in 2005
The Clifton Suspension Bridge spans Avon Gorge, linking Clifton in Bristol to Leigh Woods in North Somerset
The Maidenhead Railway Bridge, at the time the largest span for a brick arch bridge
The Royal Albert Bridge spanning the river Tamar at Saltash
Paddington station, still a mainline station, was the London terminus of the Great Western Railway
A broad-gauge train on mixed-gauge track
Drawings for Weston Junction Station, by Brunel
A reconstruction of Brunel's atmospheric railway, using a segment of the original piping at Didcot Railway Centre
A section of the actual pipe in the Swindon Steam Railway Museum
Maiden voyage of the in April 1838
Launch of the in 1843
shortly before launch in 1858
The Great Eastern in 1866
Brunel at the launch of the Great Eastern with John Scott Russell and Lord Derby
The Brunel family grave, Kensal Green Cemetery, London
Bronze statue of Brunel at Temple in London
FGW HST 43003 power car

Brunel built dockyards, the Great Western Railway (GWR), a series of steamships including the first propeller-driven transatlantic steamship, and numerous important bridges and tunnels.

King class locomotives under construction, 1928

Swindon Works

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King class locomotives under construction, 1928
D1015 Western Champion in A Shop
Watercolour of New Swindon in 1849, by Edward Snell
Preserved housing, originally built for the railway workers
An early GWR Saint class, in the period when these were taper-boilered 4-4-2 Atlantics (1905–12), in the testing shop
Evocation of wartime in Swindon Works
Locomotives outside Swindon Works in the snow in November 1964
Locomotives awaiting scrapping outside the Works
The former Pattern Store, with a working turntable a feature of the building

Swindon railway works was opened by the Great Western Railway in 1843 in Swindon, Wiltshire, England.

Station location map. The Paddington (underground) station marked here is the southern station on Praed Street.

London Paddington station

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Central London railway terminus and London Underground station complex, located on Praed Street in the Paddington area.

Central London railway terminus and London Underground station complex, located on Praed Street in the Paddington area.

Station location map. The Paddington (underground) station marked here is the southern station on Praed Street.
Layout of Paddington Station in 1888
Paddington Station in the Victorian era
Praed Street facade of the Great Western Hotel (now the Hilton London Paddington)
The GWR memorial
Statue of Isambard Kingdom Brunel
The concourse at rush hour
The Elizabeth line entrance in August 2021
Statue of Paddington Bear
Elizabeth line platforms

The site has been the London terminus of services provided by the Great Western Railway and its successors since 1838.

Map of the South Devon Railway system in 1876

South Devon Railway Company

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The South Devon Railway Company built and operated the railway from Exeter to Plymouth and Torquay in Devon, England.

The South Devon Railway Company built and operated the railway from Exeter to Plymouth and Torquay in Devon, England.

Map of the South Devon Railway system in 1876
Dawlish in the 1870s with the station and atmospheric pumping in the background
Map of the SDR system in 1848
1854 map of Plymouth and Devonport, showing the New Passage branch, which was not in fact built.

The Great Western Railway (GWR) and the B&ER were working in close harmony, and were known as the Associated Companies, forming a powerful broad gauge interest in railways.

Maidenhead Railway Bridge carrying the line over the River Thames.

Great Western Main Line

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Main line railway in England that runs westwards from London Paddington to.

Main line railway in England that runs westwards from London Paddington to.

Maidenhead Railway Bridge carrying the line over the River Thames.
St James Railway Bridge, Bath

Opened in 1841, it was the original route of the first Great Western Railway which was merged into the Western Region of British Railways in 1948.

Cornish Riviera Express

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British express passenger train that has run between London Paddington and Penzance in Cornwall since 1904.

British express passenger train that has run between London Paddington and Penzance in Cornwall since 1904.

4038 Queen Berengaria near Acton with a London bound Cornish Riviera Express
6007 King William III on Wellington Bank with a westbound Cornish Riviera in August 1954
1071 Western Renown at Reading with a westbound Cornish Riviera in April 1976
First Great Western High Speed Train with a westbound Cornish Riviera at Exeter St Thomas in July 2015
Poster by Louis Burleigh Bruhl 1928

Introduced by the Great Western Railway, the name Cornish Riviera Express has been applied to the late morning express train from London to Penzance continuously through nationalisation under British Rail and privatisation under First Great Western, only ceasing briefly during the two World Wars.

Bristol and Exeter Railway

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English railway company formed to connect Bristol and Exeter.

English railway company formed to connect Bristol and Exeter.

The B&E building at Temple Meads, Bristol
System map of the B&ER at 1 January 1876
Devil's Bridge, Uphill
Pearson 4-2-4T at Exeter in 1876

It was allied with the Great Western Railway (GWR), which built its main line between London and Bristol, and in time formed part of a through route between London and Cornwall.

5002 Ludlow Castle with a parcels train in 1962

GWR 4073 Class

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5002 Ludlow Castle with a parcels train in 1962
4079 Pendennis Castle at Chester General station in March 1967
Castle class locos 5051 Earl Bathurst and 5029 Nunney Castle climb St Germans bank
5043 Earl of Mount Edgcumbe is one of two preserved Castles to be fitted with a double chimney
5043 Earl of Mount Edgcumbe and 5080 Defiant at Tyseley Locomotive Works

The 4073 or Castle Class are 4-6-0 steam locomotives of the Great Western Railway, built between 1923 and 1950.

London and South Western Railway

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Railway company in England from 1838 to 1922.

Railway company in England from 1838 to 1922.

Southampton Terminus station today
Diagram of the LSWR in 1890
Map of LSWR Suburban Network in 1922
Holmsley railway station, now a Tea Room
Lymington Town railway station
Waterloo Station
Diagram of the LSWR in 1858
Bridestowe Station in 1964
Bishop's Waltham, terminus of branch from Botley, in 1963
Map of LSWR electrified routes in 1922
Bideford railway station in Devon on the disused section of the Tarka Line from Barnstaple.
Adams T3 class locomotive No. 563 built in 1893
LSWR carriage
Salisbury.

Spreading car ownership led to a rapid decline of passenger traffic in Devon and Cornwall from about 1960 to the end of that decade so short mid-distance-from-London branches and the remote peninsular sections of route closed under the Beeching Report, except the line to Penzance from Exeter which had since the very outset been the main preserve of the Great Western Railway, chiefly due to that company's initial laying of track there and doing so on broad gauge and encouraging Devon and Cornish companies to do so under the 'Gauge War'.

Map of the Cornwall Railway

Cornwall Railway

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Broad gauge railway from Plymouth in Devon to Falmouth in Cornwall, England, built in the second half of the nineteenth century.

Broad gauge railway from Plymouth in Devon to Falmouth in Cornwall, England, built in the second half of the nineteenth century.

Map of the Cornwall Railway
Carnon Viaduct near Perranwell on the Falmouth line, over the route of the Redruth and Chasewater Railway
Torpoint Ferry in 1894 looking west; Moorsom planned to use this for conveying passenger trains; note the gradients
Map of Plymouth and Devonport about 1854 Moorsom's route to the "Steam Ferry" is shown as "New Passage Branch" (not actually built). The South Devon Railway was originally going to build a branch to Devonport, and the Cornwall Railway was to start from there
View down Milne Place towards the ferry; Moorsom's route would have descended this gradient
Falmouth Harbour showing successive route designs
Share of the Cornwall Railway Company, issued 16. December 1846
A Cornwall railway boundary stone near Penryn
St Germans station, opened in 1859 and still standing
The St Germans deviation
Saltash station was rebuilt in the 1880s
Dido Class 0-6-0ST Argo

It was constantly beset with shortage of capital for the construction, and was eventually forced to sell its line to the dominant Great Western Railway.