Welcome to the 'New Somerset and Dorset Railway'
Thursday, July 13, 2006
looking ahead - july 13 2016
(Photo - Ivo Peters, 1956)
Will this be the view from the pill box of Midsomer Norton South in 2016? We like to think so! Already most of the infrastructure is in place, although sourcing an impressive train like the one above may be a bit harder!
So where do we realistically think we'll be in ten years time? Probably running from a new station in Radstock, through Midsomer Norton and on to the site of the original Chilcompton station. Probably with a stock of about five steam engines, ranging from the Sentinel to a tender engine. Elsewhere sections of land will be owned by us on the stretch south to Shepton, with initial preparation work on some of the station sites south of Chilcompton. Perhaps Binegar signalbox rebuilt ready for trains in about 2020?
North of Radstock preparation work on the Bath extension should be well under way, working closely with BANES, the national government, Sustrans and other interested parties, for the Bath line will be primarily a transport route. Petrol will probably be around £3 a litre, with shortages commonplace. There will be a scramble for new railway lines to be rebuilt as quickly as possible, but we will need to keep a cool head in order to build the S&D WE want, not a cheap and cheerless utilitarian route foisted on us by a desperate government!
Elsewhere on the route hopefully Shillingstone will be laying track towards Blandford, as the route north from Bournemouth becomes a vital transport corridor, linking Blandford, Wimborne and Ringwood to the network.
Of course things may move much faster than I forecast! Watch this space ...