Princetown old railway station
A look at the station site
(Photos/words © urban75, May 2007, archive pics: Dartmoor Archive)
First proposed in 1852, it wasn't until August 1883 that the railway reached finally bleak Princetown, at the end of an uphill 10 mile branch from Yelverton on the South Devon & Tavistock line.
There was originally only one other station on the branch at Dousland, but Burrator and Sheepstor Platform was opened in February 1924 to serve workmen constructing the Burrator and Sheepstor Dams.
King Tor Halt opened in June 1928 for the benefit of quarry workers living in the cottages nearby, with Ingra Tor Halt following in March 1936 to serve an adjacent quarry which enjoyed a short lived reopening.
In later years, the halt became popular with walkers and a sign at the station famously warned hikers to 'Beware Of Adders' snakes.
The lines struggled throughout its existence, and in closure was scheduled for the end of the summer season in 1955.
This was postponed until December 24th 1955, before the line was finally axed on Saturday March 3rd 1956.
The old trackbed has since become a popular walking route.
BBC video footage (Requires Realplayer)
An archive postcard view showing a one coach passenger train taking the steep climb into Princetown station.
A slower and infinitely wetter procession rounds the final bend into Princetown along the old trackbed.
See the rest of our wet walk along part of the Princetown branch trackbed here.
After the line closed on Saturday March 3rd 1956, the station buildings were demolished with most of the trackbed being converted into a pleasant moorland walk.
A look at the station site. The station platform used to be on the right hand side, in front of the row of cottages.
What looks like the only remaining railway building on the site.
The old electricity power building by the station.
Electricity didn't make it to Princetown until 1924, when two semi-diesel engines were installed with a 25-30 kW rating.
An order was put in by the local council for street lighting who, mindful of the cost, suggested that the lamps would only be needed from 1 October to 29 March, with full moons meaning they could turn them off for 8 nights of each month.
Read the full story here: Princetown Electricity Supply
An early view of Princetown station.
The site of Princetown station today. The house on the far left is the one seen above next to the locomotive.
The railway may have been ripped up over 50 years ago, but there's still a Station Road in Princetown.
The passengers are long, long gone the Station Inn remains open in the centre of Princetown.
A final look at the abandoned station site.
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