Hitting the Buffers




Douglas C Sparkes (2013) Hitting the buffers: Samuel Morton Peto, 1809–1889, railway builder extraordinaire. Baptist Historical Society, Didcot.

Morton Peto was only twenty-one years old when, with his cousin Grissell, he inherited a considerable building business. They developed the firm and built many London landmarks, including Trafalgar Square and the Houses of Parliament. Peto’s name became well known when he turned to constructing railways, employing workforces of many thousands in England and overseas. He added to his challenges a political career, entering Parliament when he was thirty-eight. His business engine along with his fame and celebrity status evaporated in the financial crash of the 1860s.