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, October 07, 2011


(Photo courtesy Jim Type, copyright C L Caddy Collection)

Shoscombe and Single Hill Halt lay between Wellow and Radstock and was, surprisingly, one of the busiest stations on the S&D. The reason for this was that roads to the village of Shoscombe were difficult to negotiate, a problem to this day.

This was one of the hardest stations to find any photos of, this is aparticularly nice example!

This section of line was double track and always busy (at least up to 1958!) There is already some support for the line to return in Shoscombe but we haven't had any real look at the area yet. Of course with Radstock to Bath being a stage one reinstatement (along with Blandford-Poole) the people of Shoscombe shouldn't have too much longer to wait for their trains to return, a day I suspect will be long remembered in the village as they are reconnected to the outside world by a form of transpport that DOES have a future!


Anonymous said...

Essential reading; 'The Great Railway Conspiracy' (Henshaw) 'Nuff said!

Sunshiner said...

Absolutely recommended reading. If ever the S&D workload lifts enough for me to start writing 'The Case for the S&D' it will be a source I will draw a great deal from!