The Railway Comes to Stroud 1845
Published by the Stroud Local History Society in 1995, 24 pages. A5 size booklet (N5314)
This booklet provides a short history of the expansion of the railway to Stroud in the mid 19th century. There are sections on the beginning, the years of waiting, the building of the railway, the opening of the line, the first years, and the effects of the railway.
From the opening section: 'A Communication direct from Stroud to London by Railroad' is 'not only essential to our Prosperity, but almost to our Existence, if there are other Railroads extending to other Manufacturing Districts. The position of Stroud was rather peculiar, it being rather isolated, and separated from any great line of communication, and if they did not succeed in bringing this railway through the valleys he believed that their existence as a manufacturing town would be destroyed. '
Such were the opinions in 1836-7 of two of the chief manufacturers of the Stroud area, Charles Stephens of Stanley Mill and Thomas Marling of Ham Mill. At that time, in spite of the construction of the Stroudwater and the Thames and Severn Canals, and in spite of the new turnpike roads, Stroud still felt itself too distant from the main English lines of communications.
The canals had not become a main artery between London and the West, their through traffic reduced by the opening of the Kennet and Avon and the Wiltshire and Berkshire Canals in 1810. Although the new turnpikes had transformed the local road system, the principal east-west roads, and hence the most frequent stage-coach services, passed either north or south of the town. In 1836 only two coaches passed daily each way between London and Stroud....
The condition of the booklet is generally excellent. The covers are clean and bright, the staple spine is tight and intact, and all pages are clean, intact, unblemished and tightly bound. There is a small price sticker on the rear side cover