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Thomas, Awdry and Brunel

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  • Thomas, Awdry and Brunel

    Hands up if this sounds familiar:
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    "No mummy! It's not HENRY it's PERCY ... d'uh!"
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    If you know what I'm talking about it means you've got/had a Thomas The Tank Engine fanatic!
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    We're really lucky to live where we do - we live so close to a lot of traditional picturesque villages, and one of those is Box.
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    Box is where Isambard Kingdom Brunel built Box Tunnel. It's 1 mile, 1,452 yards long, took five years to build and claimed the lives of about 100 navvies. There is a rumour that Brunel designed it so the sun would shine right through the tunnel on his birthday. No-one's sure if it's true, but wouldn't it be great if it was?
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    Box Tunnel entrance/exit ... top picture taken 2008, bottom picture circa 1908
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    Box Tunnel - the other direction. The derelict building on the right is all that is left of a once-thriving stone masons that used to receive the Bath Stone which was used in a lot of buildings in London.
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    (See? It's not all pink, girly stuff on this blog!)
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    Not only does Box have the tunnel, it is also where Revered Awdry lived with his son Christopher, and it was the railway line and tunnel that inspired him to write the Thomas The Tank Engine Books.
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    This is the house where he lived, and it is now a B&B, so if you've got a true fanatic, you could spend the night there!
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    All together now .... "they're two, they're four, they're six, they're eight, shunting trucks and hauling freight......"


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  • #2
    The joys of living in the West eh JBJB

    I LOVE THomas even now, my kids are 12 & 9, but they are fond memories for sure.

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    • #3
      Very interesting JBJB.
      Unfortunately you have just missed his birthday -9th April 1806 - to try out the theory.

      Melanie

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