John Speller's Web Pages Royal Progress

John Speller's Web Pages - GWR Broad Gauge

Royal Progress
The Great Western Railway built its first Royal Train in 1840, and though the Dowager Queen Adelaide made use of it for a short trip that year, it was another two years before the Queen herself first took to the rails. Queen Victoria made her first ever railway trip on Monday, 13 June 1842. She returned from Windsor Castle to Buckingham Palace by way of the Great Western Railway, with Daniel Gooch in charge of the engine. The royal train consisted of "Firefly" Class 2-2-2 locomotive "Phlegethon" (constructed the previous month), drawing the royal saloon in the center of two other saloon carriages, preceded by a second-class carriage and followed by three carriage trucks. The 18 mile journey from Slough & Windsor Station (as Slough was known before the opening of the Windsor Branch) to Paddington was accomplished in 25 minutes.
Queen Victoria arriving at Slough Station in order to travel on the Great Western Railway
The Great Western Railway's second royal saloon, built in 1848. The miniature disc-and-crossbar signal on the roof was provided for Her Majesty to signal when she wished the train to start and stop
Queen Victoria suffering the indignity of walking 20 ft. across a red carpet at Gloucester in 1849 in order to change from narrow to broad gauge. At the time this was felt to be the worst thing that had ever happened in British history
One of the two saloons which flanked the Royal Saloon on Queen Victoria's first train journey of 1842. It is shown here at Paddington in 1865
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