The last broad gauge through train leaving Paddington, 20 May 1892.
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A train leaving Paddington Station in London. The broad gauge used on the Great Western Railway (GWR), designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel (1806-1859) in the 1830s, measured 7 foot compared to Stephenson's (1803-1859) 4 foot 8 1/2 inches gauge used on most other railways. Broad gauge was eventually superseded because of the inconvenience of having to transfer pasengers and goods between the two standards of track where railways intersected. Eventually, in 1892, the last 177 miles of broad gauge track on the GWR were converted to narrow gauge, the whole task being accomplished in a remarkable two days.