Burnham-on-Sea railway station

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Burnham-on-Sea signal box at Washford.jpg
The old signal box, now restored at Washford
Coordinates51°14′03″N 2°59′50″W / 51.234049°N 2.997219°W / 51.234049; -2.997219Coordinates: 51°14′03″N 2°59′50″W / 51.234049°N 2.997219°W / 51.234049; -2.997219
Pre-groupingSomerset Central Railway
Post-groupingSR and LMS
Southern Region of British Railways
3 May 1858Opened (Burnham)
12 July 1920Renamed (Burnham-on-Sea)
29 October 1951Closed to passenger traffic
8 September 1962Closed to excursion traffic
20 May 1963Closed to goods traffic
Disused railway stations in the United Kingdom
Closed railway stations in Britain
170433 at Edinburgh Waverley.JPG UK Railways portal

Burnham-on-Sea railway station located within the town of Burnham-on-Sea, Somerset, was the terminus of the Burnham branch of the Somerset and Dorset Joint Railway. Opened as Burnham by the Somerset Central Railway on 3 May 1858, it was renamed in 1920.


The station, situated behind Abingdon Street, was a terminus although a through platform allowed services to travel on to a 900 feet (270 m) S&DJR built stone pier on the River Severn/River Parrett estuary. For a few years the railway operated steamers across the Bristol Channel to Wales.[1] Railway operations onto the pier ceased in 1888 although the pier continued in use for vessels until the 1950s.

Perhaps the strangest use of the railway along the pier was by the local area lifeboat, which was pushed on rails from the old lifeboat station (located behind the former Morrisons supermarket) and onto the "main line", across the esplanade, and down the pier where the lifeboat could be launched if the tide was right.[2]

Burnham-on-Sea closed when regular passenger services were curtailed at Highbridge on 28 October 1951. Excursion traffic continued until 1962, and the goods depot remained open until 1963.

The nearest station to Burnham is now the former joint-GWR junction station known as Highbridge and Burnham.

The station in 1962
Preceding station Disused railways Following station
Highbridge & Burnham
Line closed station open
  Somerset & Dorset Joint Railway
LSWR and Midland Railways

The site today[edit]

After station's closure, the platform and goods shed were demolished. The former trackbed eastwards was developed into Marine Drive, a road which has helped ease traffic flow into the town.[3] The location of the station itself is on the junction of Old Station Approach and Abingdon Street, and the former goods yard is now a small car park. An adjacent pub on the High Street was subsequently renamed the Somerset & Dorset. The new RNLI station and yard occupy land to the south and east of the former main station building, adjacent to the site of the former excursion platform. The first ever specifically-designed Somerfield supermarket was built to the seaward-west side, which was then sold to Morrisons. The site is now a B&M store.

Further reading[edit]

  • R.V.J.Butt, (1995). The Directory of Railway Stations. Patrick Stephens Ltd. ISBN 1-85260-508-1


  1. ^ Burnham Archived 2 October 2007 at the Wayback Machine.
  2. ^ Smith, John (11 April 2007). "Storms close 'last' section of S&D in regular use". Heritage Railway. Horncastle: Mortons Media Group (96): 26–27. ISSN 1466-3562.
  3. ^ Burnham Archived 31 August 2007 at the Wayback Machine.

External links[edit]