Dorset Railways Through Time
Series: Through Time
- Mike Phipp
15th October 2023
Dorset has always been an important railway county catering for holidaymakers heading to the resorts of Bournemouth, Swanage and Weymouth. As part of the mid-nineteenth century desire for railways to reach many parts of the country, a line from Southampton reached the county town of Dorchester in 1847. This was to become part of the London & South Western Railway. The Great Western Railway arrived in the county in 1857 with a line from Yeovil to Weymouth built to Brunel’s Broad Gauge standard. Another name associated with the county was the Somerset & Dorset Railway, which opened between Bath and Poole in 1870.
Development of the various lines are covered – their heyday was the 1950s when they were used by holidaymakers heading for the sunny South Coast. Then came the Beeching closures, but also the electrification of the main line to Weymouth. The various routes within the county are covered by a wide selection of photographs, many of which have not been published before.