|The London & Brighton Railway, opened in 1841, passed under
the crest of the North Downs through Merstham Tunnel. The tunnel is approached
through deep cuttings and is 1 mile 71 yards long.
This is the south portal, which has a prominent stone capping and string course. The capping is bracketed out over the pilasters. A brick arch with a keystone is quite unusual.
An exceptional feature of this tunnel is the brick sighting tower, which was constructed to give surveyors line of vision over the hill when setting out the railway. These were normally temporary structures and it is most unusual for one to have been built so solidly and still to be standing. It is located in the fields over the tunnel.
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This page was created 21 January 2010