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!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

S&D telegraph no 39

Midsomer Norton's excellent Telegraph (no 39) has just arrived. It's to the usual very high standard and shows their new DMU on the cover. This is always an excellent read and doesn't have pages of adverts to reduce the content!

Sad news is that Julian Jefferson is stepping down as editor. It's Julian's design skills that have really given the Telegraph its classy image, as well as his excellent photos. Hopefully he'll still be submitting! I first met Julian on a sponsored S&D walk many years ago starting at Combe Down and ending at Midford, before walking back to the start point. He's always been very hands on (working with the Sunday gang for example) as well as creative.

There is of course still a vacancy at the New S&D for a magazine editor! We need somenoe who can bring a 24 page magazine together twice a year, mainly so that distant members (and we do have members all over the world) get something for their membership fee. You'll  have a real opportunity to influence the look and feel of the New S&D. You'll get loads of support from the existing management team, as well as plenty of copy from me!

If you are interested (and this does include you Julian!) please email leysiner@aol.com

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