The Cleobury Mortimer & Ditton Priors Railway
Telling the fascinating history of this unusual railway which lay in rural southern Shropshire. The railway’s course runs parallel with the Severn Valley Railway, which lies to the east of it. The junction was Cleobury Mortimer which lay on the GWR’s Tenbury Wells-Bewdley line. Ditton Priors appeared on the railway map at a rather late stage – the line was not opened until 1908. Originally the line was worked by two Manning, Wardle 0-6-0STs. The line was absorbed into the GWR at the Grouping in 1922. The main freight traffic was stone from the quarries in this part of the Clee Hills. Passenger traffic ceased in 1938, and goods in 1939.
However, the railway was not yet set to disappear into oblivion. At the outbreak of the Second World War a Royal Naval Armament Depot was opened at Ditton Priors, ensuring the line’s survival into the 1960s. At this stage the pannier tank steam locomotives were fitted with their distinctive ‘balloon stack’ spark arresters. The RNAD also had diesel locomotives of its own.
This title was first published in 1962, a second edition appeared in 1978 and a third in 1995. This, the fourth enlarged edition includes two new appendices.
Softback, 96 pages, 111 black & white photographs, track diagrams/maps, gradient profile
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Updated: 1 April 2020