Bishops Lydeard to Stogumber
This short trip we took on a diesel.To be honest I didn't really want to be on a diesel train,as it's the steam trains that I have a thing about,but to my
surpise,the diesel wasn't that bad,was smoother than the steam and had it's own charm.
My original plan had been to walk from Stogumber station into the village,get a quick pint in the pub,have a look at Sir Francis Drake's father-in-laws tomb and then leg it back to catch the 12:59 train.I had already planned all this on Google Earth and reckoned that even with young kids it was do-able.
Looking on Google Earth,I had estimated that it was about half a mile from the station to the village,but once we had got off the train,we soon saw a sign that said that it was actually 1 mile to the village.We agreed that this was too far for the kids to walk and to get back in time and instead spent the time at the station and in the lovely little garden area that they have there.
Stogumber to Doniford Halt
My motive for going to Doniford Halt is no doubt obvious,but it's a request stop so you must ask a guard to stop the train for you.Doniford Halt is not an original station,but was opened in 1976 to serve the nearby holiday camp.It is here,as I'm sure you know,you will find the old steel pagoda from our very own Cove Halt,that was saved from a farmer's field where it was found rotting, many years after the closure of our line.
From the photos that I had seen of Cove,I had expected the pagoda to be a rather small, flimsy structure,but it is actually very solid and twice the size that I had expected it to be. Although it was lovely to see the pagoda,I also had a feeling of sadness that this lovely old pagoda,wasn't still serving the station that it was made for.
We then followed the path out of the station and onto the road.Be careful here as there are some blind bends and some cars go too fast.Two minutes walk away and you will come to a turning on your left,that is for the car park and gives you access to the beach.This is a known fossil beach and within minutes we had found some ammonites.We spent the rest of our time fossiling before heading back to get our next train.