West Somerset Railway
The Railway Station
Tel: (+44) 01643 704 996
Postcode for Sat Nav: TA4 3TR
Passengers can buy their tickets in the Refreshment Room (the old station office). Furthermore you can partake of one of the station’s now famous cream teas. On gala days bacon rolls, sausage rolls and pasties are always popular and in the colder weather tea and crumpets are served. The station also has a toilet.
Opened in May 2011 was the new waiting room. The Friends of Stogumber Station (FoSS) have been rebuilt the waiting room as closely to the original as is possible by the RAMs (restoration and Maintenance) team at Bishops Lydeard.
So why not visit the station, enjoy a hot drink and some of the splendid food served by the cheerful station staff. Relax in the garden or simply soak up the old world charm.
Stogumber is a picturesque but thriving village set in a valley between the Quantock and Brendon Hills. The main enterprise is agriculture and the village is surrounded by rolling farmland. The Parish comprises the village itself and several hamlets, including Vellow, Capton, Kingswood, Coleford Water and the "Vexfords”. The focal point of the village is the Square, which contains the pub shop and St. Mary’s Church, a large Norman church with an interesting William Morris style ceiling. The street leading up to the Square, High Street, is the most photographed part of the village, with its mix of colour-washed and thatched properties.
Since its construction in 1862 the station has seen many changes. Initially the small platform had a waiting room and signalbox while on the other side of the line there was sufficient space for a large goods shed and a spur which terminated at a cattle dock. The goods facilities fell into disuse by the 1950s and the dilapidated goods shed was demolished late in British Railways ownership. Also on the north side of the line was another small building serving as a goods lockup. This little building was constructed from the local red sandstone and was demolished before the railway was obtained by the WSR plc. The cattle dock had its bars and uprights cut away and the stable blocks which made the surface to the access ramp seem to have been ‘robbed out’ many years ago. The signal box was demolished in the 1920s and was replaced by a ground frame which was removed later with the goods facilities in the 1960s.
For a time Stogumber played host to a camping coach. Water for this coach was stored in a tank wagon that was replenished weekly via a Taunton train. However this last vestige of any sidings at SR was removed in the early 60s when the camping coach was removed. Stogumber’s buildings then fell into general disrepair and the waiting room, that was now considerably rotten, was demolished soon after the WSR plc took over.For a time Stogumber was managed by Harry Horn, the Station Master and a small group of volunteers known as the Friends of Stogumber. However time told and this band of volunteers dissipated into other railway work.
Following the death of Harry in 2000, his wife Iris, carried on as Station Master and kept the station and its gardens in very good order. However Iris was not getting any younger and in 2009 she was admitted to hospital and the station team at Bishops Lydeard was asked, by the Company, to ensure that the station remained open.
A small group of volunteers came together and Friends of Stogumber Station was reformed. Sadly Iris passed away in the autumn of 2009. Alan Bines is the Station Master.
The fledgling FoSS started to grow almost as soon as it was created and it now stands at 34 members. There are 17 staff working on the station and between them they manage the buildings, gardens and platform.
FoSS is also holding a large donation that will be used to finish off the inside of this building.
There are plans to completely refurbish the cattle dock and open this area as a viewing gallery with disabled access so that visitors to the station can enjoy a cup of tea and watch the trains go by.
Whilst on the subject of trains it will soon be seen that the stopping pattern for Stogumber will change for the galas. All down trains will stop but every other up train will pass straight through the station. From an operational view point this will save on coal as the heavy gala trains will not have to work very hard to get away from the station. The bonus for Stogumber will be that photographers and customers in the garden will be treated to the sight of trains working hard right through the station. The new viewing gallery on the cattle dock (when it is complete) will give an unrivalled view that will probably be one of the best on the whole line.
Visit the Stogumber Village Website.
Visit Stogumber Stations Website