The Great Western Railway was engineered by Isambard Kingdom Brunel, planned to link London with the south-west and west of England.
Enabled by Parliament in 1835, it soon became known as ‘God’s Wonderful Railway’, regarded as the most advanced in the world. Even after amalgamation in 1922, when the ‘big 4’ were created, GWR alone retained its name and character.
GWR historian Rosa Matheson tells an incredible story and captures the reasons behind the enduring fascination with the GWR, a tale full of record breakers and mighty achievements.
The history of the GWR is more than the story of the company and its workers, or its engines, carriages, the battle of the broad gauge and the magnificent engineers, including Gooch, Dean, Churchward and of course Brunel. It is the sum of all the parts and more. In the 175th year of its inauguration it is a story waiting to be retold to a modern age.
The book is full of little-known facts and figures and includes company history, engines, carriages, the battle for broad gauge and the great engineers. Includes 90 colour and black and white illustrations with a timeline and details of preserved railways and museums connected to the railway.
Dr Rosa Matheson is Swindon’s best-known railway author. A long-time enthusiast of Swindon Works, GWR and women’s railway history, she has a large collection of memorabilia and has written a number of books and articles on her pet topics. She is also active in presenting talks to the community. She has previously written TRIP: The Annual Holiday for GWR’s Swindon Works, and The Fair Sex: Women and the GWR for The History Press. She lives in Wiltshire.
The GWR Story is available at £8.99 from Waterstone’s and The History Press. Signed copies are available by mailing firstname.lastname@example.org