I am no expert on steam trains but what I think I do know is that The Swanage Railway must have the most iconic of views on its route!
The scenic remains of Corfe Castle a medieval fortress that the train skirts around on its route from the pretty seaside town Swanage on its way to Norden some 6 miles away.
However the highlight really has to be the views of the stately castle as you approach the village of Corfe Castle from either the southern or northern directions of the line.
Sitting high on a mound, the castle that was blown up by the Roundheads during the English Civil war after they had managed to gain access to the castle by a clever deception.
The return adult fare of £12.50 is a pretty fair outlay for the chance to see one of the best views of the castle and from plus with all the experience that steam train ride brings to the occasion and even visitors to the castle can’t resist a chance to snap the trains as they pass by too.
Unlike many other heritage lines to be this one in fact fell outside Dr Beeching’s axe back in the early 1960’s but by later in 1972 it was shut by British Rail and then some remarkable people conceived the idea of bringing the line back into use and today they even have it connected to the main Weymouth to London Waterloo line. This allowed the branch line to run a total of 11 miles to Wareham this extension certainly opens many new possibilities for the operators of the Swanage line.
CORFE CASTLE FOR A BACKDROP !
Back in the mid 1970’s who would have thought the end result would be such an achievement of some scale and all carried out by volunteers. The thousands, if not millions of hours of work has made it all happen, the joining to the mainline is a pinnacle but the icing has to be the castle. The steam trains sweep almost majestically around it giving trains spotters an unparalleled view for their scrapbooks and video collections with the castle providing the most stunning of backdrops. And even for me, as I am certainly no train buff.
Visiting like I have on lovely summers or even for that matter a winter’s day it’s an image that is hard to beat and one you will want to record too.