Wednesday, 4 July 2007

shropshire and montgomeryshire joint railway

(photos taken 22.10.1986)

Even as late as the 1980s there were still a few non-preservation byways in the UK. This was a small surviving stub of the former Shropshire and Montgomeryshire Joint Railway, probably the second or third most ramshackle of the Colonel Stephens lines, which has a fascinating history including five closures!

I think this bit was still used for occasional freight trains to the old Abbey Foregate Station in Shrewsbury. It closed soon afterwards. The bottom picture shows the very end of the line, in happier times it continued almost to Wales.
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Sunday, 20 May 2007

1958 - an English branch line

A lovely atmospheric film of the Saxmundham to Aldeburgh railway in 1958, including street shots.

Tuesday, 15 May 2007

a lost southern line

There are few really rural lines left in Britain, this was Watergate Halt on the old Torrington to Halwill line, which retained a freight service into the 1980s. This shot was taken in 1980. The line had closed to passengers as late as 1965, it was also one of the last standard gauge lines to open in Britain. The line is now unfortunately lifted throughout, although the northern section of the route from Bideford to Barnstaple is likely to reopen in the not too distant future.
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Friday, 11 May 2007

swanage pier tramway

An unusual sight in Swanage is the remains of the old Swanage Pier Tramway, closed for many decades. The rail on a good portion of the route survives, set into the blocks along the sea front. These views were taken on May 9, 2007.

It wouldn't take a great deal of work to restore this route for short trips along the sea front - perhaps even in a horse tram! Horses were used to pull the trains of stone which were the reason for the line's existence. It was never very successful as an extension through Swanage was blocked.
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Saturday, 5 May 2007

groudle glen

This little visited line is on the Isle of Man and is a real delight. Trains start from a small station set in the woods and end up on the cliff edge close to an abandoned zoo.

Wednesday, 2 May 2007

more hungarian narrow gauge

More intriguing Hungarian narrow gauge. These appear to have been taken on the Kismaros to Kiralyrét line.

Hungarian narrow gauge

Found this on Youtube. I went to Hungary a couple of years ago and hardly saw a railway, let alone a narrow gauge one. This is likely to drag me back there some day!

Thursday, 12 April 2007

still in rainy Austria ...

As a bit of a remedy to the Thorlerbahn video, this is a video of the Mixnitz-St Erhard line, which is still with us!

Thorlerbahn - a recently closed Austrain NG line

Unusually this Austrian narrow gauge line closed as recently as 1999, and has now been lifted. From the video it looks like it took a typically scenic route. Excuse the translation - the original website is in French. You may find the original easier to understand!

Holyhead Breakwater Railway

The Holyhead Breakwater Railway was unique in that it was an industrial line owned and operated by British Rail - and was totally separate from the rest of the network.

There is now a society which aims to restore part of this line.


A Youtube offering showing the recreation of the famous double departure on this narrow gauge network in north eastern Austria.

Saturday, 7 April 2007

secret line in Cornwall, UK

The Padstow Cliff Railway is a private line used to transport lifeboatmen down the cliff to the lifeboat station at Mother Ivey's Bay. At just 32 metres long it must be one of the shortest - and steepest - lines in the country!

Thursday, 5 April 2007

Polish narrow gauge

This is a video of a 2005 trip along the Bieszczadzka Kolej Leśna line.

a rural german tramway

I've not visited this line yet but I certainly plan to! It runs from Bad Schandau in the former East Germany along rural roads through the Kirnitzschtal in Saxon Switzerland.