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Original Text (Annotation: EAW006461 / 2021045)

' Six months from the time of this photo and Paddington station will pass into national ownership. Unique among all the London termini Paddington belonged to one railway company only. Unlike the other companies the GWR was never, throughout its entire existence, absorbed or amalgamated. Paddington station itself owes its existence to the bitter rivalry between the GWR and the London & Birmingham because the Great Western Railway Act of 1835 didn't envisage a station at Paddington, but a common terminus at Euston. A temporary station was built from which trains commenced running on 4th August 1838, and lasted some 16 years. Paddington station over the years became something of a tourist attraction because of its bold design. It was also the first public building in London to be illuminated by electricity, from November 1880. The Station originally consited of 3 huge spans and in 1913 work began to provide a fourth span to accommodate platforms 10-12. From 1908 up until 1934, with the exception of the war years, the GWR carried out almost continuous improvements to the station and its approaches. '