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!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

get together

The New S&D was invited to the regular joint meeting of S&D groups on Sunday. I went along with our secretary, Anna-Jayne Metcalfe. It also gave me a chance to see developments at Midsomer Norton first hand. You'll have seen some of this over the last few days on this blog!

The meeting was most interesting and showed us all that there are plenty of opportunities to work together. There were representatives from the New S&D, SDRHT (Midsomer Norton), NDRT (Shillingstone) and SDRT (Washford). It was agreed to invite the New S&D to all future meetings, also Gartell will be invited to the next one, which will bring all the S&D groups together in one place or the first time. We do of course all have the same aim - to preserve and develop the S&D. We are slightly different in that the heritage aspect is only part of what we do, but a VERY important part!

It was good to meet up with old friends again! There are a lot of passionate S&D people out there and together I reckon there's nothing we can't achieve!

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I was very pleased to read of the meeting of all the current S&D interest groups,both, preservation and development i.e.future transport.
I also liked the photos,particularly the second and third showing the change in gradient at the end of the platform.
I look forward to seeing a steam hauled train pounding up toward Chilcompton in 2016.