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, October 23, 2011

last chance!

Hello supporter
Steve Ehrlicher has trawled through the rival bids for the NatWest money tonight and using his info, the situation is as follows as at 8.30pm) in our area:
Keynsham Mencap : 442 votes
Bath Swim (for disabled)): 362
Our project: 325
Somer FM Radio: 310 (and increasing by four or five every hour)
The voting I have just found out now has been extended to finish at 12 noon tomorrow. Steve also tells me that because a number of people have found it difficult to get online Nat West now have a freephone number 0800 0155 545 that you can call - just quote Project number 2903 and/or the name Somerset & Dorset Railway Heritage Trust. This of course could put us back to fourth because we don't think the numbers on the site reflect any telephone votes so if you want to cast your vote and haven't been able to get through or want to tell your friends to vote for us, please use the telephone shortcut please and email them asap. Somer FM Radio will be going great guns on tomorrow's radio show to tip uis into fourth place as they have a captive radio audeince and may well be lketting people know of our score to chivvy people to vote - we don't have the same audience of course. Unfortunately this additional telephone voting cannot differentiate between those who may already have voted and those who have not so there could be some double counting. We need to get another 100 or so votes I think to be sure of being in one of the top three so do tell all your railway friends about this number and use it if you have had problems getting through.
Best wishes and thank you for all your efforts on our behalf.
John Baxter

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