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Article from the Cheltenham Examiner via British Newspaper Library online

Collision & Explosion at Shrivenham Station

This Listing is based on a newspaper article that apperared in the Cheltenham Examiner on Wednesday 20th Septemeber 1871.

Collision and Explosion on the Great Western Railway

Saturday's North Wilts Herald reports an accident on Friday on the Great Western Railway at Shrivenham station near Swindon. It seems that the goods train which left London at 10 on Thursday evening was shunting, as usual, about three o'clock in the morning. Part of the train was standing a little beyond the platform while the engine was moving some trucks further down the line. From some cause or other at present uknown the express goods train, which leaves London at 11.40, ran into the stationary portion of the train, smashing a van loaded with gunpowder, some of which got underneath the engine, and the cinders dropping on it caused an explosion. The engine was forced upon a truck, and was blackened by the powder, but otherwise it does not seem to have been much damaged. Several trucks were forced end on end, and broken pieces of agricultural implements, which were being conveyed in the train strewed over the place. The line was blocked up with the wreck, and much of the rubbish covered the two platforms of the stations. There was a large quantitiy of powder in the waggons, but, strange to say, only a portion exploded, and many of the packages were found in an adjoining field unbroken. The guard of the express train and the engine driver escaped injury almost by a miracle. So powerful was the explosion that Jonathan Barnes, ostler of the Goddard Arms, Swindon (six miles distant), who was getting a trap ready for an early journey, heard a great noise and saw a bright light. Sargeant Stevens, who was on duty at New Swindon, also heard the explosion.



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