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!

Tuesday, February 08, 2011


Two sets of pictures that show the incredible transformation at Midford. The top two I took on 15 September 2010 which was the very first day of operations at the site, the first day of the restoration of the whole line.

The second set of shots show Midford on Sunday with the platform and bank cleared, as well as the retaining wall that was behind the station building. (Both pics © Stuart Seale).

There's still a lot of clearance work to do both at the station and along the trackbed up to the Long Arch bridge so please try to turn up on a Sunday if you can. The blistering pace of the clearance has been very impressive and we are much much further along than I thought we would be on that warm day back in September!
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yamfaz said...

Impressive, well done guys :)

Knoxy said...

someone's found a chainsaw then!

superb job....

keep it going

Andrew Triggs said...

Again great to see excellent progress, well done to all involved, wish West Cornwall wasn't so far away sometimes!

Anonymous said...

Is a shame to decimate a hedgerow and trees to just reveal a brick wall