50 Years since Swanage branch closed

341o2

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To mark this event, the cl 117 will operate between Swanage and Norden Jan 1 - 3.

On each day, the first 50 passengers to book online will pay the price of a 1972 ticket - 50p
 
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StephenHunter

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Went on that before the pandemic on a railtour with their 33/2. Very nice ex-Southern carriages.
 

davetheguard

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To mark this event, the cl 117 will operate between Swanage and Norden Jan 1 - 3.

On each day, the first 50 passengers to book online will pay the price of a 1972 ticket - 50p

As there wasn't actually a station at Norden in 1972, I assume this was the Corfe Castle to Swanage fare? IMHO a much better way of marking the event would be to run over the entire branch from Wareham and forget the soundbite 50p thing!
 

SargeNpton

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Corfe Castle station in 1975, giving an idea of how much work the Swanage Rail had to do to get the line up and running again.
Corfe001a.jpg
 

VEP3417

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SargeNpton

now thats what you call camping with a view :lol:

i quite enjoyed the tour/days where they had the 4tc going from wearham to swanage and back, was nice to ride the whole line and onto the mainline
 

Dougal2345

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What's the latest news on Wareham to Swanage services? I've rather lost track since the pandemic, a quick précis of the current situation would be appreciated. Are there any plans, however tentative, for services next summer? What's happening with the DMUs that were originally intended to run the service?
 

Titfield

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What's the latest news on Wareham to Swanage services? I've rather lost track since the pandemic, a quick précis of the current situation would be appreciated. Are there any plans, however tentative, for services next summer? What's happening with the DMUs that were originally intended to run the service?

I understand that there will be a 90 day trial service - the second trial year as agreed with the then Dorset Council - using the DMUs subject to being granted an operators licence and the other required permissions / approvals: train paths, station access agreement etc etc.

IF the service follows the first trial pattern in 2017 it will be 4 round trips a day 5 days a week.

Crew training on the DMU has been ongoing over the past few months.

Obviously subject also to there being no lockdowns or other interventions.
 

Dougal2345

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Thanks for that! Just trying to think back how things have gone, is this correct?:

2021, 2020 - no service, 2019 - should have been like 2018 but all cancelled due to strikes, 2018 - cl 159 doing the Swanage-Wareham-Weymouth-Yeovil grand tour, 2017 - the topped-and-tailed 4TC.

But if everything had gone as planned, it would have been the DCC DMUs running a trial service in 2017 and 2018 and a fuller service from 2019 on... But this was cancelled due to problems with the stock, so the 4TC was used in 2017, and then SWT stepped in and did their own thing in 2018?
 

Titfield

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2017 was a 60 day trial service by SR using hired in stock because the DMU refurbishment programme was still in progress.

2018 should have been a 90 day trial service by SR but was not operated due to the losses incurred by SR on the previous years trial. The DMUs were still undergoing refurbishment and thus stock would have to have been hired in.

SR had committed to doing two trials one of 60 days and one of 90 days. Any operation thereafter would have been with agreement with (the then) DCC and may have required financial support. The purpose of the trials was to gauge demand.

In 2018 SWT ran a saturdays only peak season service to Corfe Castle which ran around the houses to get there. It had very low promotional fares and was popular.

In 2019 I cant remember exactly how many days it operated (if at all) but was hit by strike action.

Like many I am keen to see the wareham service operate but realistically the 2017 trial showed that patronage was mainly on the first down (to Swanage) and the last up (to Wareham) and that does call into question whether it is viable especially given the additional costs and resources required.
 

tumbles

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2017 was a 60 day trial service by SR using hired in stock because the DMU refurbishment programme was still in progress.

2018 should have been a 90 day trial service by SR but was not operated due to the losses incurred by SR on the previous years trial. The DMUs were still undergoing refurbishment and thus stock would have to have been hired in.

SR had committed to doing two trials one of 60 days and one of 90 days. Any operation thereafter would have been with agreement with (the then) DCC and may have required financial support. The purpose of the trials was to gauge demand.

In 2018 SWT ran a saturdays only peak season service to Corfe Castle which ran around the houses to get there. It had very low promotional fares and was popular.

In 2019 I cant remember exactly how many days it operated (if at all) but was hit by strike action.

Like many I am keen to see the wareham service operate but realistically the 2017 trial showed that patronage was mainly on the first down (to Swanage) and the last up (to Wareham) and that does call into question whether it is viable especially given the additional costs and resources required.
I always wonder if it had been easier to run a separate line from Worgret Junction to Wareham Station that’s completely isolated from the mainline allowing them to run services far easier and as/when demand requires it. Could almost say same for WSR to Taunton.
 

341o2

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I understand that NR have used the trackbed of the down bay for signalling equipment. Then you have to aquire the land for the new formation.
Then extensive earthworks as Worgret is in a cutting, and finally a new bridge for the A352
 

Titfield

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I understand that NR have used the trackbed of the down bay for signalling equipment. Then you have to aquire the land for the new formation.
Then extensive earthworks as Worgret is in a cutting, and finally a new bridge for the A352

The down bay area is now the car park at Wareham Station.

The up bay has a NR large grey cabinet in the middle of the trackbed. IIRC the trackbed in the up bay is now also home to various protected flora and fauna that would need to be relocated to a new habitat.

I always wonder if it had been easier to run a separate line from Worgret Junction to Wareham Station that’s completely isolated from the mainline allowing them to run services far easier and as/when demand requires it. Could almost say same for WSR to Taunton.

Like at Brockenhurst for the Lymington Branch!
 

williamn

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I was just browsing their website and it just seems very unfortunate that the first thing they promote is a 350 space car park under ‘getting there’, with anything else an afterthought, eso when so much money has gone into putting the physical rail link in.
 

Titfield

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I was just browsing their website and it just seems very unfortunate that the first thing they promote is a 350 space car park under ‘getting there’, with anything else an afterthought, eso when so much money has gone into putting the physical rail link in.

Swanage Railway will face something of a paradox when it comes to marketing the railway once the Wareham trial service commences sometime in 2022 all being well.

It needs to promote:

1. The diesel powered Wareham service / link on the days it operates (but nb only 4 times a day)

AND

2. The steam powered service between Norden (aka Purbeck Park) on the days it operates (up to every 40 minutes ) daily from end of March to end of September (approx).

Not easy to promote both these given the very obvious differences.
 

30907

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I was just browsing their website and it just seems very unfortunate that the first thing they promote is a 350 space car park under ‘getting there’, with anything else an afterthought, eso when so much money has gone into putting the physical rail link in.
Given that DCC wants to promote the line as a P+R for Swanage (justifiably in summer!), that the rail link isn't operative, and that the Wareham bus stops some way from Norden station, it seems perfectly reasonable to me.
 

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