A cycle ride to Starcross

We went off on the new cycle track yesterday down to Starcross. Lots and lots of people were out on their bikes too – indeed later on the  in the day I saw dozens of people dressed as Santas and Elves cycling back to Exeter!

IMG_2951Also the first outing for  my new bike – the Genesis Equilibrium

I’m standing outside the steam tower for Brunel’s Atmospheric Railway – this was a bold innovative project which aimed to have trains running between Exeter and Newton Abbot and eventually onto Plymouth. It was launched in 1847 and was fully operationally by 1848 – however success was short lived – the atmospheric technology failed to deliver as expected and the system had to be reverted to conventional trains. It is a long and complex tail – a classic of entreprenurial genius, failure and success. For the full story see here.

IMG_2947A plaque commemorating the project

IMG_2955Originally there were other steam towers along the route but now this is the only one that survives

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