Welcome to the 'New Somerset and Dorset Railway'

The original Somerset and Dorset Railway closed very controversially in 1966. It is time that decision, made in a very different world, was reversed. We now have many councillors, MPs, businesses and individuals living along the line supporting us. Even the Ministry of Transport supports our general aim. The New S&D was formed in 2009 with the aim of rebuilding as much of the route as possible, at the very least the main line from Bath (Britain's only World Heritage City) to Bournemouth (our premier seaside resort); as well as the branches to Wells, Glastonbury and Wimborne. We will achieve this through a mix of lobbying, trackbed purchase and restoration of sections of the route as they become economically viable. With Climate Change, road congestion, capacity constraints on the railways and now Peak Oil firmly on the agenda we are pushing against an open door. We already own Midford just south of Bath, and are restoring Spetisbury under license from DCC, but this is just the start. There are other established groups restoring stations and line at Midsomer Norton and Shillingstone, and the fabulous narrow gauge line near Templevcombe, the Gartell Railway.

There are now FIVE sites being actively restored on the S&D and this blog will follow what goes on at all of them!
Midford - Midsomer Norton - Gartell - Shillingstone - Spetisbury

Our Aim:

Our aim is to use a mix of lobbying, strategic track-bed purchase, fundraising and encouragement and support of groups already preserving sections of the route, as well as working with local and national government, local people, countryside groups and railway enthusiasts (of all types!) To restore sections of the route as they become viable.
Whilst the New S&D will primarily be a modern passenger and freight railway offering state of the art trains and services, we will also restore the infrastructure to the highest standards and encourage steam working and steam specials over all sections of the route, as well as work very closely with existing heritage lines established on the route.

This blog contains my personal views. Anything said here does not necessarily represent the aims or views of any of the groups currently restoring, preserving or operating trains over the Somerset and Dorset Railway!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

a 9F on the S&D

This is 9F Morning Star at Shillingstone (18.2.2009).

Progress is already being made on this monster - a new cab has been built and it's generally looking a lot better when I last saw it a few years ago.

The 9F is definitely a commitment to a new S&D. Rumours are that although the hulk was able to be brought in by road, that option will simply not be available when it is fully restored. The only way it will visit anywhere is (at least partly!) by rail. Obviously this doesn't presume a fully restored S&D, but it will require that Shillingstone extend to a point where bridge weight restrictions will no longer apply. In any case a big loco like this deserves a good ten miles of S&D to justify its presence - but the more sanguine amongst us will already wish it to run down to Bournemouth and up through Masbury and Midsomer Norton to Bath!
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GMasterH said...

It'll take forever to restore such a monster, but they should never have been scrapped in the first place! They were built to have working lives until NOW! But, as with all major projects, it'll be well worth it in the end.

Does Midsomer Norton have any plans for an ex-Barry loco? Perhaps a "Jinty" or a BR Standard tank for the early days untill more powerfull locomotives are required. There are plenty of Bullied Pacifics around.

Anonymous said...

The Cab is not for the 9f but for the Clan Locomotive Hengist. The Locomotive is being built all over England but the hope is put it together at Shillingstone if the restortion shed is ever built!

Anonymous said...

It would be nice to rebuild the railway at Shillingstone out as far as the Blandford Bypass you could have a park and ride in the fields near the Durweston traffic lights. You could unload locos their aswell I think you would have some issues with the Durweston road bridge if a 60 Ton railway loco went over it! We got to Remember also that the cliff cutting is filled in and the Stour river bridges is missing south of Shillingstone. I do beleive the bridge was built for double track but was only single.