Battlefield History Tours

Battlefield History Tours
Incorporating History and Heritage tours

On Tour - Rail in the UK Tour 23 June 2023


We woke to another fine day but were hoping that it would not reach the highs of yesterday. We had some distance to go to visit the Swanage Heritage Railway.

Located in the Isle of Purbeck, the rebuilt Swanage Railway is also known as the Jurasic Coast Railway. This heritage railway attraction operates full-size steam and diesel passenger trains along the five and a half miles of line from Norden to Corfe Castle and down to the Victorian seaside town of Swanage.

The line has stations at Corfe Castle and Harman's Cross as well as a halt at Herston, on the outskirts of Swanage. Due to traffic issues on the way which was caused by a major accident that closed the road to Swanage it had taken us more time than planned to reach the special Coach parking area as coaches were not able to access the town. At the parking area was a huge market, but as we wished to board the 1130 Steam Train to Norden, we hurried on only to hear the whistle as the Train started it's journey. We therefore were aiming at the 1330 train and moved on to Swanage main street.

It was decided to have lunch first but the group split up and it was Tom, Michael, Graham and I who found a famous Cornish pastie shop and waited until the fresh ones came out of the oven. So, we had Coffee and Tea while we waited. The staff were very good there and after a while our pasties arrived. Worth the wait!!

After lunch we went down to the seaside to watch many who were there enjoying themselves while we were being eyed by the biggest Seagulls you have ever seen.

We found our way back to the train and waited to Board. It was a great run to Norden and we made our way to what we thought would be a good extension to the Market near the Coach Parking area. But there were not carriages or trains there, so we caught the next train back to Swanage station. While waiting for the train, Tom and I were able to get up into the train and be with the Fireman and Driver on the Footplate.

It was a real long trip back to Buckfast Abbey and we didn't arrive there until after 1800. An interesting dinner followed arrival and then bed for these tired adventurers.

Tomorrow, more to see!!

Graham Fleeton.


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