Re­union as ‘last train’ marked

Herald Express - - Down Your Way -

STAFF at the South Devon Rail­way dressed in black and placed a wreath on the front of a steam en­gine to mark the 60th an­niver­sary of the last train from Totnes to Ash­bur­ton, which ran in Novem­ber 1958.

There was even a re­union for three of the 1950s chil­dren who used the train to travel to school ev­ery day.

San­dra Cole­man, Janet Mas­ters and Cathie Sparkes have been friends ever since, and cut a spe­cial cake to mark the oc­ca­sion.

The line opened orig­i­nally in 1872 pro­vid­ing a ser­vice to its ru­ral com­mu­nity for 86 years.

But, un­like most West Coun­try ru­ral branch lines which suc­cumbed to the in­fa­mous Beech­ing Axe of the 1960s, this one had a much brighter and in­ter­est­ing fu­ture.

It has now en­joyed a new life for nearly 50 years since 1969

San­dra Cole­man, Janet Mas­ters and Cathie Sparkes mark the last train in 1958 with steam hauled her­itage train ser­vices op­er­at­ing be­tween Totnes and Buck­fastleigh, now run by the South Devon Rail­way Trust.

The SDR Trust Mu­seum marked the with­drawal of timetabled ser­vices with com­mem­o­ra­tive dis­plays, in­clud­ing pho­to­graphs, per­sonal mem­o­ries from peo­ple who used the line, and a va­ri­ety of ob­jects from those early days.

The steam lo­co­mo­tive work- ing the day’s trains car­ried a head­board bear­ing the leg­end Totnes to Ash­bur­ton Last Train 1958-2018. The wreath was cer­e­mo­ni­ally car­ried to the front of the lo­co­mo­tive and there was a eu­logy for the pass­ing of the much-lamented train ser­vice.

The SDR also ran a spe­cial, evening steam hauled ser­vice which re­turned from Totnes at the same time as the last train did 60 years ago, ar­riv­ing back in Buck­fastleigh at 9.21pm.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.