By Lorraine Gibson.
IN the midst of continuing rails strikes, a timely piece of railway history will be resurrected when Wimborne Railway Society marks the 60th anniversary of the Beeching Report.
The report, which tolled the death knell for hundreds of railway lines across Great Britain, was issued in March 1963 to address the failure of a modernisation plan to stem British Rail’s losses.
Dr Richard Beeching, its Conservative government appointed author, proposed wholesale route closures to concentrate resources on core routes.
These closures included the Somerset and Dorset, a picturesque route running over the Mendip Hills from Bath to Bournemouth and passing close to Wimborne before terminating at Bournemouth West, the site of which now lies under the Wessex Way, and which is still commemorated by the name of the road which saw so many holidaymakers – Station Road.
A train which brought thousands of visitors to Dorset was aptly named The Pines Express.
To mark the anniversary of the Beeching Report, Wimborne Railway Society is offering families and individuals of all ages the chance to see, admire and remember how this famous terminus looked when steam was king.
The story will be brought to life by the award-winning Bournemouth West – voted one of the top ten layouts in the country – when it appears at the Wimborne Railway Society ‘Railex’ Model Railway Exhibition at the Allendale Centre, Hanham Road, Wimborne on Saturday and Sunday, 15 and 16 April.
It may be 60 years since the last Pines Express delivered its happy cargo of holidaymakers to Bournemouth, but many Dorset residents still remember it with great affection.
If you have a related memory or photo you would like to share, send it to email@example.com