The Dartmoor Railway line is part of what was once the London South Western Railway main line from London Waterloo to Plymouth and North Cornwall opened as a through route in 1876.
Whilst many of the South Western lines were axed in the 1960s, this particular stretch was kept open to transport ballast from Meldon Quarry for use on all parts of the British Railways Southern Region.
Meldon Quarry and the stretch of line from Coleford Junction to the Quarry were subsequently sold to Aggregate Industries whom together with Devon County Council, Dartmoor National Park and RMS Locotec formulated the concept of the Dartmoor Railway. The concept was to create a Community Railway that would enable visitors to access and enjoy the National Park without the use of a car.
In 2008 the Dartmoor Railway was acquired by Iowa Pacific Holdings, with aim to increase freight usage of the line and re-introduce passenger services from Okehampton to Exeter. Whilst these have not yet come into fruition they are always a future possibility.
In the meantime Heritage Services have been running over the past ten years and will continue to develop in a positive direction following the fantastic success of our high profile Polar Express Train Ride which runs over the Christmas season.
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