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!

Friday, December 31, 2010

as the decade turns ...

As 2010 turns into 2011 and the new decade begins I would like to thank everyone who has been so supportive this year, particularly Anna-Jayne Metcalfe, Tom and Stuart Seale, David Bailey, Mick Knox and many, many others. This next decade is going to be a huge one for the S&D, both at the established S&D sites (Shillingstone, Gartell, Washford, Midsomer Norton and Midford) and new locations which will spring up as the decade progresses.

And a particularly big thank you to all those doubters who have embraced the S&D revival over the last year or two, who often become the biggest supporters and advocates of what we are doing! I'm sure there will be many, many more who will come over to us in the next ten years!

A very happy and prosperous New Year to all of you.
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1 comment:

Toddingtonted said...

Until fairly recently I have to admit to being a "doubter" and, although I think 2011 will be a very difficult year, especially for any public sector financing, I also believe that the case for extending existing S&D projects as well as initiating new ones (even if its only protecting the trackbed/infrastructure etc) will continue. Next week petrol and diesel will go up in price, as will most rail tickets, but the signs of increasing rail travel are growing all the time. As regards the heritage sector, which I think is a big incentivisor, I have been very impressed with all the work carried out at MN and Shillingstone and I really must go along in person this year to see them! So well done to you all and keep up the good work!