1865 – Opening of the Horsham and Guildford Line

Newspaper clipping - Opening of the Horsham and Guildford Line
10th October 1865

“The new line was opened to the public on Monday last. An event as important to the District might well have been celebrated by some demonstration, but the time-table was simply issued, and the first train reached Horsham from Guildford at 7.30 on Monday morning with about 30 passengers, and 15 passengers for Horsham who had a benefit of being carried free. The first train down left for Horsham at about 8.15 with about 40 passengers. At 2.25 a free train conveyed a number of spectators to a Volunteer display at Baynards. The Horsham Line is about seventeen miles in Length and affords the shortest route to Brighton from Guildford, Kingston, Chertsey, Richmond, Twickenham, Putney, Windsor, Alton and all stations on the South Western line. It will also open-up a portion of Sussex which from West Surrey and Hants was hitherto difficult to access. The new railway starts from a point on the Mid-Sussex near Horsham, proceeding to Slinfold under the Old Roman Road, and crossing the valley of the River Arun with a very high embankment. Passing the village of Rudgwick the line runs up the hill of Great House through a tunnel upwards of 400 yards in length, thence to Baynards and the ridge of the hill to Cranley which village is close to the right of the line. The railway then proceeds along the valley, and crosses the Wey and Arun alongside which it runs through Bramley Ward and enters the estate of Lord Grantley of Wonersh. The main road from Bramley to Wonersh is then crossed by the line which still following the direction of the Wey and Arun canal crosses the Godalming canal, under the Shalford and Godalming, and comes to its terminus, a junction with the Portsmouth direct line of the South-Western Railway. The Guildford station is however, in point of fact, the terminus. The new line will be worked in-conjunction with the London, Brighton and South-Coast Railway. The Stations on the line are Bramley, Cranley, Baynards, and Slinfold. The works which join the Mid-Sussex have a fork line running North to Horsham and south fork adjoining the Shoreham branch of the Brighton railway direct. The engineer of the new line was Mr H Woods C.E and The contractor Mr James Holme of Liverpool. The Line has been laid down with single rails but the bridges are provided for a double line.”

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