Birmingham and Oxford Junction Railway Notice to Treat 1845
The authorised route of the Birmingham & Oxford Junction Railway was to the old London and Birmingham Railway terminus at Curzon Street and although this connection was no longer required, a brick arched viaduct was constructed for the line. Today, sections of the unused Duddeston viaduct still straddle Bordesley as a reminder of the changing allegiances and rivalries between the original Railway Companies. At this point the main line is actually the Birmingham Extension Railway, which was authorised to construct the short section between a junction at Adderley Street (now Bordesley Station) on the Birmingham & Oxford Junction Railway and a new joint station with the Birmingham, Wolverhampton & Dudley Railway at Livery Street in the centre of Birmingham. Prior to February 1858, this station was referred to as Livery Street or Great Charles Street, but from that date the station was officially known as Snow Hill. The illustrated Notice to Treat is for the compulsory purchase of land for this extension. In 1859 a journey from Birmingham to London on the Great Western Railway took 2 hours and 50 minutes, 10 minutes quicker than the rival LNWR service. The original Snow Hill station was a temporary affair with wooden structures, but this was rebuilt in 1871 and the original station roof was reused at Didcot as a carriage shed. The line to the south of the station ran through a deep open cutting before reaching a tunnel. This cutting was roofed over in 1874 to provide valuable retail space and a grand shopping arcade following the line of the tunnel was erected in 1876.