Main Line to the West - Part Two: Salisbury to Yeovil
The Salisbury & Yeovil line was the central part of the Southern’s Main Line to the West. Promoted and built by an independent local company, its stations were well placed for the centres of Salisbury, Tisbury, Gillingham, Sherborne and Yeovil. The station at the small village of Templecombe prospered as a junction with the Somerset & Dorset line, the route for much freight traffic to and from the west. Here coal, stone, manufactured goods, milk and Burton beer from the Midland line was transferred. Going north went cider from Whimple, rabbits from Dartmoor, fruit and flowers from the Tamar Valley and watercress from Hampshire. The South Western worked and later bought the line, at a very high price, and fast trains from Waterloo provided good services for both business and holiday passengers. Although Beeching cuts reduced the line’s status to little more than a single track byway, today it provides a good and frequent service to London. Part One covered Basingstoke to Salisbury whilst Part Three will deal with the route onwards from Yeovil to Exeter.
Hardback, 322 pages, black & white photographs
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