John Speller's Web Pages Bridgwater Railway

John Speller's Web Pages - L&SWR
Bridgwater Railway LSWR Horizontal Menu Untitled
The Bridgwater Railway arose from a dissatisfaction among Bridgwater merchants, particularly Sully & Co., the coal merchants, with the high prices and poor service of the Bristol & Exeter Railway. Though first mooted in the middle of the nineteenth century, it took such a long time to come to fruition that by the time it was built it was largely superfluous. The Bridgwater Railway finally managed to get its Act of incorporation on 18 August 1882, for a 7-mile 14-chain line of railway from Edington Road station on the Somerset & Dorset Joint Railway's Highbridge to Glastonbury line, to Bridgwater. There was an authorized capital of 135,000. The engineer was Richard Gervase Elwes (d. 1906) a partner with David Wells-Owen in Messrs. Wells-Owen & Elwes of Westminster. The line opened on 21 July 1890, whereupon Edington Road station was renamed Edington Junction. There were stations at Edington Junction, Cossington and Bridgwater North. There was a working agreement with the London & South Western Railway to work the line, and Bridgwater North was built in a decidedly L&SWR architectural style, but in fact the Bridgwater Railway remained an independent company until it became part of the Southern Railway on 1 January 1923. It was always run as if part of the Somerset & Dorset Joint Railway, although it never actually was. Bawdrip Halt was added on 7 July 1923. Traffic was always very disappointing. The line closed to passengers 1 December 1952 (after which Edington Road/Edington Junction became Edington Burtle) and to goods traffic on 4 October 1954. It is perhaps worth speculating that the line might have been more successful if a connection had been made with the Great Western Railway, as might easily have been done if anyone had had the will to do it, enabling trains to run through from Taunton to Glastonbury and Wells.
Map of the Bridgwater Railway and associated lines
Cossington station at the beginning of the twentieth century
Bridgwater North station, 22 April 1963. Image Copyright Ben Brooksbank and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence
Site Contents Untitled