Sunday, 7 June 2015

Clevedon surprise

(All 7.6.2015 copyright Rail Thing/Steve Sainsbury)

The sun drew us out to Clevedon today. Now Clevedon once had four stations, one on the short GWR branch from Yatton, and three on the fantastic Weston, Clevedon and Portishead Railway. Today there are no standard gauge stations (unbelievably for such a busy town) - but we did find one station, still busy and with trains running ....

My last trip to Clevedon was in 2007 and I found what looked like a 10 1/4" gauge line by the seafront. Today the line is still there but has been regauged to 15" - and what a nice set up it is! There is a very smart loco, which to my untrained eye is a scaled down model of an actual class from the standard gauge (I don't really do the loco thing!) and the route still runs around the perimeter of the common, which today was really lively with picnics, donkey rides and a bouncy castle, so plenty to see!

Clevedon of course really needs its branch back - it closed in 1966, stupidly in my opinion as it was only a short route and was busy to the end. Doubtless many commuters parked at Yatton and took the train from there, but doubtless many more just stayed in their cars and endured the drive into Bristol. All seaside towns need trains, and they really need to be coming into the heart of town again. I also happen to think that a revived WCPR would be a fantastic asset to Weston, Clevedon and Portishead and hope one day to be able to travel from Bristol to Weston via the reopened Portishead line (opening in 2018) and on to Weston via the WCPR!

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