The railways transformed Britain. Within a relatively few years, travelling 'up to town' became a normal feature of upper middle class life. People could have the best of both worlds, living in the country yet visiting London on a regular basis.
Paddington station was an engineering marvel. Isambard Kingdom Brunel, already famous for his steamship designs, devised the great steel arches that supported the glass roof. Other major stations followed suit, giving the British railway terminus its distinctive appearance and emphasising its importance.
The railways, with the telegraph, brought about a new way of life in Britain, connecting people to the capital city in a matter of a few hours.