Thomas Telford's genius is reflected in the variety and great technical skill of his constructions, most of which are still in use today. The 'colossus of roads' built or improved hundreds of miles of durable, fast roads in Scotland, England, and Wales, but it is perhaps Telford's work on canals in Britain that attracts most attention now: the Ellesmere Canal with its magnificent aqueducts at Pontcysyllte and Chirk; and the Caledonian Canal cutting its way through the Great Glen in Scotland. Telford's appointment as the first President of the Institution of Civil Engineers shows that his generation recognised him as a real leader of his profession, and the naming of Telford New Town in his honor indicates that his great contribution to civil engineering is still recognized in our own time.
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Author Biography - Rhoda M. Pearce
Rhoda M. Pearce taught history at secondary school level and was for six years a Senior Lecturer in History at Crewe College of Education. Formerly both a deputy head and headmistress, she has edited an archive teaching unit on Thomas Telford and a documentary source book, Canals, for use in schools.