Somerton railway station

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Somerton (Somerset)
Car 15 at Somerton Railway Station.jpg
Somerton Station c1906
Location
Place Somerton
Area South Somerset
Grid reference ST487284
Operations
Pre-grouping Great Western Railway
Post-grouping Great Western Railway
Platforms 2
History
2 July 1906 Opened as Somerton(Somerset)
10 Sept.1962 closed for passengers
6 July 1964 Closed for freight
Disused railway stations in the United Kingdom
Closed railway stations in Britain
A B C D–F G H–J K–L M–O P–R S T–V W–Z
170433 at Edinburgh Waverley.JPG UK Railways portal

Somerton railway station (not to be confused with Fritwell & Somerton) was a small railway station situated on the Great Western Railway's Langport and Castle Cary Railway. It served the town of Somerton in Somerset, England.[1]

History[edit]

Somerton station opened to the public on 2 July 1906,[2] in a cutting adjoining the town centre. The station had two signal boxes and a goods shed, however none of these are still standing. The station stopped handling passenger services on 10 September 1962[3] but continued to serve freight traffic until closing altogether on 6 July 1964.[4] Despite all the stations between Castle Cary and Taunton being closed, the line remained open for trains from London Paddington station to stations such as Paignton, Plymouth and Penzance.

In recent times there have been various aspirations to re-open the station by local people, including former local MP David Heath[5] - but until that may happen, the only real sign of the station today is a 350-metre (1,150 ft)-long siding which had been built originally to let goods trains be overtaken. This siding is still used occasionally by Network Rail during night-time engineering works.

Description[edit]

The station lay just behind the West Street girder bridge and ran all the way down to the Perry Hill area of the town. The main building was sited on the eastbound platform, with the goods shed at the west end of that platform. The original signal box was placed just opposite this platform, but a second signal box was opened in 1942 to control and monitor some new loop lines and sidings which created to the west of the station itself.[6]

Various local businesses used the station as a site for their companies, with a cattle market, an animal and corn feed mill, a coal yard and even a fish merchant all having stood on the site.

The site today[edit]

The site of the station today

Up until the mid-1980s when the original signal box was demolished, a few station huts still stood on the site,[7] but these have all ceased to exist.

In May 2018, it was revealed in a transport strategy that the station should reopen to passengers.[8]

Services[edit]

Preceding station Historical railways Following station
Long Sutton and Pitney   Langport and Castle Cary Railway
(Great Western Railway)
  Charlton Mackrell

References[edit]

  1. ^ "10. Railway", Somerton Web Museum,
  2. ^ "Photographs", Somerton Web Museum,
  3. ^ Lambert, Tim. "Somerton". Local Histories. Retrieved 24 September 2012. 
  4. ^ R. W. Dunning (editor), A. P. Baggs, R. J. E. Bush, Margaret Tomlinson (1974). "Parishes: Somerton". A History of the County of Somerset: Volume 3. Institute of Historical Research. Retrieved 24 September 2012. 
  5. ^ Heath, David. "The positive side for region's transport", Western Gazette, 2 August 2012.
  6. ^ Oakley, Mike (2006). Somerset Railway Stations. Bristol: Redcliffe Press. ISBN 1-904537-54-5. 
  7. ^ Langmaid, Nancy, (c2009) The Wooldridge Album, Somerton Station
  8. ^ [1]