This film is part of Free

The West Somerset Railway Company Part 3

West Somerset Railway forestalls closure

News 1978 3 mins

From the collection of:

Logo for South West Film and Television Archive


Westward TV reporter John Doyle visits Taunton Railway station to interview two representatives of the West Somerset Railway Company on averting closure. Since 1976 the company has struggled to keep the line open but WSR do manage to reopen Stogumber station with plans to run to Taunton.

West Somerset Railway is owned by Somerset County Council but leased to the WSR. The Board averts another crisis and manages to stay afloat. In 1979 the line is opened to Bishops Lydeard with in 1987 a new station at Doniford and in 2009 one at Norton Fitzwarren. Originally the line opened in 1862 from Taunton to Watchet and was extended to Minehead in 1874. The line, closed by British Rail in 1971, boasts one of the longest heritage lines in England.