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London’s rail infrastructure is one of the keys to its success as city. The Victorians carved through great swathes of the capital to deliver workers into the centre; in the 1930s the extension to the rail and underground system provided access to the suburban areas of Metroland.

Today, the construction of the Elizabeth Line has encouraged development of new housing in areas from Ealing to Abbey Wood that previously suffered from poor accessibility. This month we start a series of talks looking at the role of engineering and infrastructure in London’s growth and development with engineer Alistair Lenczner providing a wider view of the development of the  capital’s network as well as it future potential. In April, architect Rob Naybour of Weston Williamson and historian Dr. Steven Brindle look in detail at one station - Paddington - from its origins as a temporary terminus to its role as a modern transport hub.