Thursday, 5 May 2011

All aboard for some Swanage steam train action

The Mose and I went down to Dorset for a few days over the Easter break, mainly because I was wetting myself at the prospect of having a little go on the Swanage Steam Railway after they signed themselves up to my Brown Sign Way website.

This railway line wasn't actually one of the many hundreds across the country that were pulled up and abandoned after Dr Richard Beeching overhauled the railway network in the infamous Becching Report of 1963. This report saw the closure of around a third of all railway lines across Britain (luckily for us though many have now been restored and got themselves a brown sign). This line, which runs from Norden (just north of Corfe Castle) down to the beach and Swanage, was closed in 1972 after British Rail deemed the line simply not profitable enough to sustain, which aroused much local consternation and upset, as you can imagine. Just 3 years later though The Swanage Railway Project was set up by a group of dedicated volunteers (God I love them) and the painstaking task of relaying the line and restoring the railway back to it's former glory was begun. It took over 30 years to complete but finally the first passenger service to run from London all the way through to Swanage via Wareham arrived on the 1st of May 2009.