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, November 16, 2011

supermarkets look to the future

Thanks to Jim Type for this!

Tesco train service will remove 40,000 truck journey's [sic] annually

Thursday 10 November 2011 17:10
Tesco has launched a new rail freight service from Daventry to Thurrock which it says will help remove 40,000 lorries from the roads each year.

A second service, from its Daventry logistics hub to Magor, south Wales will begin later this month.

Trains leaving from Daventry will transport shampoo, deodorants, confectionary and wine and will return loaded with washing powder, washing up liquid, and detergent from Proctor & Gamble.
“Utilising rail services allows us to transport products across the country in the most sustainable way, taking thousands of lorries off the road each year and reducing our carbon emissions,” says Nigel Jones, Tesco UK logistics director. “In addition to transferring goods from our central depot to other points for distribution to the stores, the trains will also return to our depot with goods from our key suppliers making the service even more efficient.”

The supermarket says the two rail services will also save it 10,000 tonnes of CO².


Neil S. said...

I don't like supermarkets: they have ruined the heart of Chepstow Thornbury and Yate of which I have fonds memories from boyhood.

However, I am a realist.

If Tesco are sincere, would it not be a good idea to put a spur on the side of the railway which leads right to the back of a large supermarket, like the goods shed of old. The goods vans etc can be left in peace for unloading. The LMS and GWR(apologies)were legendary in using this method. Just takes a bit of planning of which spur comes first and proper shunting procedures.

Sunshiner said...

This is what they do at many industrial locations in Switzerland for example. Makes so much more sense leaving a wagon or two to unload rather than having a lorry driver standing round for hours waiting for it to be done, which is both costly and inefficient.

Anna Metcalfe said...


There was talk of Asda doing just that off the Weardale line in Bishop Auckland a little while ago. B&Q is also located alongside the line nearby, so there's certainly potential for a bit of joined up thinking there.

I haven't heard anything concrete about the proposal in a while, but that may be a consequence of the difficulties Network Rail seem to have in agreeing to share infrastructure with the WR, and the resultant delays to the development of the station area at Bishop Auckland.

Jim said...

This could have happened in Andover, Tesco wanted to build one of their BIG SHEDS on the old RAF station in Andover, but were refused because of objections from the locals about trucks going in & out 24 hours a day, but if anybody had thought about it they could have had a spur line from the Ludgershall branch which would have been only a few hundred yards long, Problem solved!!!!!!!!!!!!!!