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, May 21, 2014

The New Midford!

We have now launched the MIDFORD APPEAL, which will be used to rebuild the station in its classic 1950s style at our site in Midford, fully owned by the New S&D via its property company, Wessex Links Ltd.

The target is £40,000 but this is just an estimate. This should provide enough for planning and design, materials, construction and services for the site. The initial intention is to rebuild the station building and the oil store.

All members are asked to get involved, either in fundraising, the physical work of rebuilding or admin for this standalone project. Ideally a manager for the Appeal (as opposed to Project Manager at the station site) would proactively promote the appeal through the railway, local and national press, radio etc and liaise with the New S&D board throughout the rebuilding. If interested in this post please email Steve Sainsbury on leysiner@aol.com

If you have any appropriate skills, for example fundraising, cost and material control, carpentry, bricklaying etc please contact on the above email or telephone Steve Sainsbury on 0117 3738973.
Cheques are welcome (payable to New Somerset and Dorset Railway) for the appeal, you can also Paypal to SDRHTSales@aol.com

We can also use STAMPS and COINS to raise money for Midford. All stamps are wanted - these can be sent in (any amount!) still on the paper, ideally leaving about 1/4" of backing paper around the perforations. Also all coins are welcome - old British pre-decimal, holiday money etc. Please do not mix coins and stamps together! These should be sent to New S&D Midford Appeal, 10 Bellamy Avenue, Hartcliffe, BRISTOL, BS13 0HW

We can also use (to resell) railway tickets, model railway items (anything!) and railway and transport books! Have a clear out AND raise money for Midford!!


marcocrowder said...

It is obviously great that we have started the ball rolling on the Midford Station project. I am just wondering whether it would be pragmatic to build a small brick unit on the platform to start with for the purpose of selling to the public. This would enable us to raise funds for the project from sales refreshments and merchandise etc. It would also be an interface with the public which would enable us to gain support and demonstrate our ambition. Any thoughts anyone?

Carole Cross said...

I would think even a small wooden hut would be a good idea for a place to sell merchandise and refreshments. It would also be a place to shelter from the rain. You may be able to find these for sale or to give away in the ad sections of local newspapers or social media. A second one for Spetisbury would be useful too.

Cee Dee said...

Just a thought as a money raising idea. If you are using bricks, then have a pile of them at the station and ask people to buy them and sign them, then their name would become part of the station. A book could be kept, a bit like a visitors book, with the date, name and any comment the contributor would like to make. I did this many years ago and my brick is part of Guildford Cathedral.