|The Lambourn Valley Railway
The LVR Today
remains of the old line in the 21st century: from Newbury to Lambourn
West Fields to Boxford
Above: Long before the
houses were built here, in the West Fields area
this was the point at which the LVR crossed the alignment
of the road - or to be a little more precise somewhere near the
greenery on the left. A short distance away to the left was the site of
trackbed viewed looking towards the former Speen
There were plans
to preserve the line as a heritage steam railway, but they did not come
to fruition and now any new similar proposals would have several major
civil engineering feats to overcome, not least how the line would now
cross the new A34 Newbury bypass which is immediately behind the
Speen station opened in 1898 and closed in 1960. The driveway follows
the course of the old railway and the station was on the left where the
sunlit hedge is now. The driveway leads to a new private residential
estate somewhat tweely called "The Sydings" and odd because
contemporary map and photographic evidence shows that of all the
accoutrements of railway infrastructure a siding, yet alone more than
one, was never warranted here.
Above: This bridge used to carry the former LVR over Moor Lane. The
route of the Lambourn Valley Way long-distance footpath takes it
through the bridge.
is the point on Snake Lane in Woodspeen where the railway used to cross.
|The raised area
on the left of the former trackbed is the platform and all that remains
of the former Stockcross
& Bagnor station, which opened in
|The now-peaceful site of
at Boxford is over the fence at the corner of the field in the
The trackbed at Easton,
which must be one of the very few settlements that the railway
passed through that did not have a station!
The scenes above were captured almost
50 years to the day after closure of the line to regular passenger and
Words & all images
above by Nigel Cox,
remains of the former Welford Park station (above). The area where the
and sidings were once laid is now a large car park.Visitors now park here each year, when calling to see
display of snowdrops in the grounds of Welford Park House.
|Above: The village hall
occupies the site of the entrance to Great
|Above: This is the LVR
trackbed, looking away from the site of the station, towards Lambourn,
across an area that had a goods siding. The footpath leads to East
Words & the two
images above by Nigel
Cox, January 2010
East Garston to Lambourn
22nd February 2002, this site's originator, Ken Tarbox, set out to
discover what hidden treasures, if
any, could still be found along the old route. His start and finish
points for this particular walk were All Saint's
Church East Garston and Bockhampton Crossing respectively.
On leaving the
church, the embankment curves gently to
the left passing two hefty metal posts, possibly the remains of the
upright part of a loading gauge or signal. Halfway round the curve is a
somewhat overgrown, but virtually intact, brick and concrete bridge.
sturdily built railway fencing of that era still stands today and
indeed some of the actual track is still working for its living,
although not in the way that was originally intended.
the bridge and heading towards Eastbury, the curved embankment runs
gently down to ground level. A hundred yards or so further on, the
remains of a cutting becomes evident.
Eastbury to Lambourn
this point, the footpath narrows dramatically and the old track bed has
been absorbed into gardens and overbuilt with houses. It reappears
briefly and on these occasions, is clearly defined by the continuance
of the old railway fencing and hedgerows that now follow its former
route. Just past the old site of Eastbury Halt, it stops abruptly.
route of the line from
Bockhampton Crossing into Lambourn is visible only by the hedgrows
along its length, but nothing material remains between here and
|Above: The area that once was Lambourn Station was for a while a
small industrial estate, with traces of the station buildings
still visible uptil the 1980s. It is now however a housing
development and, apart from the use of the name Old Station
Yard, all traces of the station have been obliterated.
||However, can still possible trace much of the route using modern
technology, such as Google Maps. Start using the second photo on the
this page as your guide, and, with Google Maps in satellite mode, you
can quite easily pick up the trackbed's path perpendicular to the A34 to the north-west of Newbury.
Locate Speen and a road called The Sydings (yes) which heads parallel
to Lambourn Road and the trackbed is clear for most of the LVR line's
length until you get to Lambourn itself.
Walking the line
Berkshire County Council
has published a pamphlet (scroll down to find Lambourn Valley Way)
about a walk that
closely follows the path of the LVR. It includes this image (hover over
image to enlarge):
|In addition, you can find images taken of the
route as it is today around East Garston on Beautiful England's