Who was he? Thomas Telford was a Scottish Civil engineer, he was born in Dunfriesshire in 1757. A civil engineer like Telford is one that works on projects that are for public use, things like roads and railways.
What did he do? He was a self-taught engineer and worked on projects ranging from roads, to bridges to canals.
Engineering claim to fame? In his lifetime he was involved in the construction of over 1000 miles of roads in the UK. If you were to lay all those in one long line you would be able to get from London to Seville in the south of Spain!
Back to the drawing board? Thomas Telford was one of the first large scale engineers who would bother to test materials before he used them in his constructions. This meant that if the material wasn’t up to the job he would have to find another one or a different way to use it.
Fascinating Fact? Telford revolutionised the way roads are designed by making them higher in the middle than they are at the sides (like a little hill) this meant that rain water could run off easily. Have a look next time you are on a path by a road and you might spot Telford’s design!