WESTERN & WEST MIDLAND RAILWAYS
In the spring of 1861 the West Midland Railway sponsored a bill to give
it its own main line into London. It was the London, Buckinghamshire
and West Midland Junction Railway, and its course was as follows; from
the W.M.R. at Yarnton, with connections north and south to the G.W.R.
at Wolvercot, passing through Thame, Risborough, Amersham, Beaconsfield
and Uxbridge to Kensington (Addison Road), and a terminus in Knightsbridge
and Slone Street; with a branch to Aylesbury and a fork to the West
London Railway near Shepherds Bush. The capital for the scheme to be
Counsel was briefed ready for the West Midlands battle with the Great
Western and the London and North-Western Railways, when on the last
day of April, just as the parliamentary committee was to open the Great
Western and the West Midland Railways announced they were to be amalgamated!
The bill was immediately withdrawn and on the 4th. May an agreement
was concluded, which included the following clauses;
Great Western Railway was to lease the original Oxford, Worcester
and Wolverhampton Railway, under the powers of the 1848 act, with
running powers over the remainder; the West Midland Railway to have
reciprocal powers over the Great Western.
two systems would be worked as a whole. The nett receipts to be divided
G.W.R. - 82.5% to W.M.R. - 17.5%.
A joint committee of 18 G.W.R. and 6 W.M.R. directors to manage the
The narrow gauge line from Reading to Paddington and Brentford to
be completed as soon as possible, as per the bill now before parliament,
so as to be ready for the opening of the Worcester and Hereford, and
the Severn Valley Railways.
Application to be made to parliament for a complete amalgamation within
was agreed by both groups of shareholders at a meeting on May 30th.
the amalgamation the W.M.R. had 190 miles of railway with the right
to lease or work 77 miles more. The O.W.W.R. section north of Evesham
containing 76 timber bridges and viaducts.