Film: 953

Railways | 1950 | Silent | B/W

Synopsis:

Princetown To Yelverton Railway, a Great Western Railway branch line. One engine, one carriage, one guard, one passenger 1950's

This spectacular branch line railway was originally and unusually built by the government then later Dartmoor Prison itself. Single track '45 class locomotive, one engine and one carriage, one fireman, one driver, one guard and seemingly, one passenger. It suffered from few passengers, hence a prime target for Beeching's closure programme. We pass Burrator and Sheepstor halt. Most of the station were halts rather than station proper. We pass Burrator dam. This film was shot in winter, frequently in these parts the railway was the only means of communication when the roads were blocked by snow. We see a housewife from a lonely farm, who obviously has a good idea of the timetable as we see her walking along the railway track itself ! The stations were well known by the tourists in summer for their warning notices " Beware of the Snakes". We see some old world GWR courtesy as the guard gets out to open the carriage door for our only passenger the housewife.

The train now heads out across the moor through very isolated countryside and climbs to reach Princeton. A moorland pony greets us at the station. A poster reads that the line was closed on 6th March 1956. Attempts to preserve this line were not unsuccessful.


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