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!

Monday, March 14, 2011


We've had a big influx of new members over the last few weeks - and many of you won't have heard back from me yet with your membership cards, magazine etc. Please accept my apologies.

One reason for the hold up is that I'm switching computers and all the information has to be passed from one to the other. But the biggest hold up is that I can't transfer Right Lines over and preserve the format so I need to produce issue 3 before sending out memberships! This won't be the printed glossy planned - one of you needs to volunteer as an editor before that happens (apply at leysiner@aol.com!) - but a temporary issue, but it may take a week or two more.

The other problem is that, as many of you know, I'm diabetic, one of those unfortunate ones that needs a three monthly B12 shot, which I'll be having in a couple of hours' time. Problem is I'm so B12 depleted that anything but the most routine work is very hard to do, and it takes a day or two after the jab before everything settles, so please be patient!
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