Oddities on a long-gone line
Bromyard to Leominster
14 September 2002  
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The Great Western line from Worcester to Leominster traversed delightfully rural area  - real "back of beyond" country, which perhaps explains why it is no longer with us. The remotest part, from Bromyard to Leominster, closed 50 years ago, on 15th September 1952, the remainder surviving until 1964 when it, too, was swept away. That was not the end of the story. In 1958, the last train (a special) ran from Bromyard to Leominster - the track had been used for storing wagons, but now lifting was imminent. More recently there have been other developments - and to mark the 50th anniversary, they were opened to the public over the weekend. The Bromyard and Linton Railway is a 2ft gauge line, built on the first mile or so from Bromyard towards Worcester, the property of one man, Bob Palmer. It is not open to the public, but Bob and friends have "rail fun" from time to time. Sadly, for insurance reasons, nothing could be run while the site was open to the public, but various locomotives were posed for inspection. Mostly Motor-Rails and Rustons, there is also a steam locomotive (in bits, and not on display) - "Mesozoic", Peckett 0-6-0ST 1327 of 1913.
Geoff’s Rail Diaries
It was a similar story at Rowden Mill station, first stop on the line to Leominster. Here, John Wilkinson has made a superb job of station restoration, and has laid a reasonable amount of track - so that, again, at private gatherings, preserved "03" D2371 can shunt up and down. Also present here is a fine collection of Wickham self-propelled trolleys - I believe they are known as "Speeders" across the Atlantic, for perhaps contradictory reasons. Today's last call, one station nearer to Leominster, is Fencote station. Here, once again, a fine job of restoration has been done by owner Mr K Matthews, with track relaid, and another Wickham for good measure. And, in the waiting room opposite the main station building, a sales stand, where I was able to stock up on a substantial number of ancient railway magazines, for a most reasonable sum. An excellent day's entertainment! Remember, all these sites are private. Please don't abuse the owners' privacy - keep an eye on the railway press in case there's another such event.
No 3 "Nell Gwynne", RH229648 of 1944, B&LR No 7 MR 20082 of 1953, B&LR No 1 MR 9676 of 1952, and train of V-skips, B&LR No 1 and train, B&LR Long term projects.... rust'n Rustons, B&LR L10, RH198241 of 1939, B&LR Rowden Mill station Wickhams - PWM2191 (4168 of 1948) and A13W (6884 of 1954), Rowden Mill Wickham B30W, PWM3956 (6941 of 1955) View from the cattle dock, Rowden Mill D2371 and train, Rowden Mill The Leominster line, Fencote Fencote station and Wickham PWM4314 (7517 of 1956) Time for the weedkilling train! I wonder how far the track goes... Fencote station