Posts Tagged ‘steam train’


Visit to Severn Valley Railway

In Pictures from England on October 3, 2018 by cubsur51 Tagged: , ,

The early finish to the cricket match (my team lost big time!) gave me a spare day so I decided to visit the Severn Valley Railway at Kidderminster. I last saw this operation about 35 years ago! The preserved mainly steam operated line runs for 16 miles (26km) between Kidderminster and Bridgnorth. The route is mostly along the Severn Valley, but you don’t get to see much of the river at times. Nowadays the area is very rural but until 40 or 50 years ago there were coalmines and brickworks. The final section of the original line closed in 1970. In that same year the first preserved section opened, with the complete route being in service from 1984.


I was also able to spend an afternoon in the very neat town of Bridgnorth. The town is in two parts, High Town and Low Town, connected by some very steep hills and a slightly eccentric funicular railway.

Bridgnorth has a very acceptable number of pubs including the Railwaymen’s Arms inside the station buildings. If you have the opportunity, take a ride on the railway and visit the pubs! It’s easy to get to from Birmingham adn many other places. The SVR station at Kidderminster is next to the national rail station.

My pictures of the railway and Bridgnorth here.


Royan and Le Train des Mouettes

Cloudy day yesterday but managed to fit in a trip across the river to Royan and Le Train des Mouettes. Their website is my pictures a little later. Here’s one as a sample. It is the oldest working steam locomotive in France, dating from 1891. A couple more samples added, I have the remainder of the pictures in the album at this moment –!Am0w7qp9HCpqhJhK9hARD1Vlfox9gQ



My itinerary :- cycle 9km Soulac sur Mer to the ferry at Pointe de Grave. Tie up the bike to a fence post. Luckily a ferry was waiting, so a 20 minute crossing to Royan, costs €3,30. Pleasant walk across the town for about 20 minutes to the bus station. Time to have a look around the area. Royan has an excellent beach right in the town, but the town itself has no architectural merit whatsoever. An ‘error’ by the US Air Force late in World War Two resulted in the town centre being bombed rather than the docks. Most of the town’s population had been evacuated, but nevertheless 442 civilians were killed and about the same number injured. Forty-seven German military were also killed.

The reconstruction of the town was in the modern brutal style, apart from the very unusual church. It was partly covered in scaffolding, but here’s a picture grabbed from the web.


After that, a bus to Saujon, cost €1,60 it was a little late then held up in heavy traffic. But no worries. At Saujon a slight navigational error meant it was a 20 minute walk to the tourist railway rather than about 12.

After the train trip, which took an hour and 20 minutes, time for a little look around La Tremblade, a little town not quite on the coast. Then another bus back to Royan, a 45 minute ride but at the same flat fare of €1,60, followed by the same walk back across town to the ferry. Ferry was just arriving, not much of a wait to get back across to Pointe De Grave, untied the bike and an easy 9km back to Soulac and some well needed beer.

Royan and Le Train des Mouettes

Tagged: , on August 1, 2018 by cubsur51

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Visit to the Spa Valley Railway, Tunbridge Wells, Easter Monday 21st April.

I hadn’t been there since the line closed to regular passenger service in 1985. The Spa Valley railway runs between Tunbridge Wells West station and Eridge, where it shares the station with Southern Railway normal passenger trains. There is though no physical connection between the two railways.

The history of the line and other information can be found at the official website and on Wikipedia

The  Spa Valley Railway operates a mixture of steam and diesel trains preserved from the past. On the day of my visit, trains were being hauled alternately by steam loco number 62, named Ugly, and diesel 33 062 which is of a type once very common around these parts. These were built between 1960 and 1962 and about 25 survive on various heritage lines around the UK and a few are still seen on the main lines hauling tour trains.

Tunbridge Wells West station is a half mile walk from the main station (Tunbridge Wells) which is served by frequent suburban trains of the South Eastern Railway from London and all parts. One the reasons given for the original closure of the line at Tunbridge Wells West was that it would be too complicated and expensive to construct a turnback facility for diesel trains at the main station when it was being electrified in 1986. A short stretch of track connected West and what was then called Central station.

Photo Album

Visit to the Spa Valley Railway, Tunbridge Wells, Easter Monday 21st April.

Tagged: , , , on April 27, 2014 by cubsur51

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