The construction of the railway presented numerous engineering challenges including the need to tunnel under the River Thames, but it was achieved using the ‘Greathead Shield’ which allowed workers to dig and line the tunnel simultaneously.

The robbers succeeded in stealing over £2.6 million in cash. Worth £50million today, the vast majority of the money was never recovered.

By the end of the competition Rocket was the only engine to complete the full course without suffering any damage, securing Stephenson the contract to manufacture locomotives for the Liverpool and Manchester Railway that opened the following year.