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!

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Blandford Arches

Good to see that this smaller project is going from strength to strength within the wider S&D revival!

Try to get along on Sunday 24 May 2015 if you can!

If you get the chance pop up to the station site where there is still some track set into the roadway plus an excellent walk northwards.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Spetisbury 17 May 2015

(All pics Spetisbury 17.5.2015 copyright Kevin Mitchell)

Spetisbury is looking fantastic as we proceed from spring into summer. The whole site has been tidied up and is now festooned with flowers. The Sunday team offer refreshments and a few New S&D sales items and also are more than happy to welcome new members to the work parties - so if you are interested in getting involved at this magical location please contact Dean Cockwell on deancockwell@ntlworld.com 

The team now feel confident enough to invite visitors to the site as part of the Spetisbury Open Gardens day on Sunday June 7, 2015 (details below). So if you can please come on that day to join in with the well-deserved event!

Saturday, May 16, 2015

new arrival at Shillingstone

(Pics via Shillingstone project)

A new arrival at Shillingstone this week is this gunpowder van that has been kindly donated to the site from the Washford group.

Shillingstone is going from strength to strength and as well as a number of railway vehicles on site it now has a working diesel locomotive (seen in picture 3).

It's good to see this sort of generosity happening between the various S&D groups, a harbinger of future co-operation between all 5 groups now actively involved in preserving and rebuilding the line.