THE owners of mineral property in Shropshire as well as the agriculturists, are viewing with great satisfaction every indication of progressing the operation of the Severn Valley Railway Company. The half yearly meeting of this company was held on Monday. The directors reported that Messrs. Peto, Brassey, and Betts, the contractors, were now in possession of land to the extent of 21 miles at Bridgnorth, Broseley, Bewdley, and Stourport, and they (the directors) were prepared to extend their operations so soon as agreements for the purchase of land would allow them to proceed. By promptly meeting the calls, they hoped that the shareholders would enable the directors to complete the line in two years.
From the speech of the chairman it appeared that since the 23rd of July, when the bill for the extension of time received the royal assent, land sufficient for three miles of railway had been purchased. The directors did not think that the estimated capital of £530,000 would be exceeded. The construction of the works would cost £363,000. If the sum estimated was exceeded it would be because of price demanded for land. The line would pass through a very beautiful and fertile district, and also a large mineral district. He hoped the landholders would meet the company as they might, in a liberal spirit. There might be sense exceptions, but, on the whole, he trusted they would he satisfied with a reasonable amount for their land. If the shareholders responded to the calls, the line would be opened for traffic within two years from the present time. That one of the directors might devote himself entirely to the business of the company during its construction with a view to strict economy, which at such a time had been neglected by some companies, was as determined that the yearly allowance to the directors should be increased from £570 to £1,600.
It was afterwards stated that the line was to be a single one in the first instance, but that by agreement to pay £20,000 more, the contractors would make the earthworks a double line, which was considered by Mr. Fowler, the company's engineer, to be desirable, and the charge very moderate. There can be no doubt that the mineral property of Shropshire will be greatly increased in value so soon as this railway is completed.