Friday, July 08, 2022

Jago Hazzard on the Brentford branch: "Brunel's last hurrah"

Brentford was where the Grand Union Canal met the tidal Thames. So by the time Brunel's branch opened in 1859 (the year of his death) the town was already an established inland port. 

Goods were transhipped from the canal and the new railway on to barges and sent down the river to the Pool of London to be shipped around the world. And the reverse process happened, with goods from abroad being distributed around the country by railway and canal.

Jago Hazzard gives the history of the Brentford branch in this characteristically engaging video.

In recent years there has been talk of restoring passenger services to it, as in this MyLondon article from 2016:

A new rail link connecting Brentford with Crossrail at Southall could open by 2020, Hounslow Council hopes.

A new station would be created at Transport Avenue, Brentford, close to the A4 Great West Road and GlaxoSmithKline and Sky 's headquarters, under the proposals.

It would be connected with Southall via an existing freight line, with three trains an hour running between the two stations. ...

Should the new line open, the long-term plan is to connect the new Transport Avenue station with Brentford train station to the south, though this is likely to be many years further off.

But as with so many suggested reopenings, there have been no recent signs of progress.

You can support Jago's videos via his Patreon page.

And talking of Brunel, here are The Men That Will Not Be Blamed For Nothing.

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