Norden railway station (Dorset)
The station platform looking towards Wareham.
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|Managed by||Swanage Railway|
|Stations on heritage railways in the United Kingdom|
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Norden railway station is a railway station located one mile to the north of the village of Corfe Castle, on the Isle of Purbeck in the English county of Dorset. It is the northern-most station on Swanage Railway, a heritage railway that currently operates from Norden to Swanage. A Park and Ride site is adjacent to the station, and visitors can leave their cars, and ride the train to the village of Corfe Castle and the popular seaside destination of Swanage.
The Norden Nest Buffet at Norden station is now closed and no catering is available at Norden for the foreseeable future. The site is also the home of the Purbeck Mineral and Mining Museum which is open Tues,Weds,Sat,Sun 11.00am to 5.00pm during the summer. Included in the museum is a very realistic section of a mine tunnel.
The Swanage Railway follows the route of the former London and South Western Railway line from Wareham to Swanage, a line that opened in 1885 and was finally closed by British Rail in 1972. From the time of closure, a strong campaign to reopen the railway as a steam locomotive operated heritage railway developed, and the Swanage Railway began operating a steam service at the Swanage end of the line in 1982. As the line was progressively extended northwards towards Corfe Castle, concerns grew that terminating the line there would make existing parking problems in the picturesque village worse. It was therefore decided to extend the line the further half a mile to Norden, and build a Park and Ride site there.
Although there was not a passenger station at Norden prior to the opening of the current station in 1995, the station is built on the site of the former Norden Ball clay works. These works were served by a siding off the Wareham to Swanage railway, and also by two narrow gauge railways that connected the Ball clay pits to the works, and the works to small ports on the south side of Poole Harbour. The earliest of these was the Middlebere Plateway, a horse-drawn plateway that opened in 1806 and was Dorset's first railway. At the beginning of the 20th century this was superseded by Norden & Goathorn Railway, a conventional steam locomotive hauled railway. After the Second World War this railway was replaced with a local system that ran across the Skew Bridge at the eastern end of the station to the mines on the southern side of the A351. Because of this heritage, the Swanage Railway has developed the Purbeck Mineral and Mining Museum which is now open on the site at Norden.
Services run every day from the beginning of April to late October, with weekend only operation in March, November and December. The level of service varies from 6 to 17 trains a day in each direction, depending the season and the day of the week. Trains from Norden travel southbound to stations at Corfe Castle (2 mins), Harman's Cross (12 mins), Herston (trains stop only on request), and Swanage (23 mins).
Although track is now complete through to the junction with Network Rail at Worgret Junction, the normal service on the Swanage Railway still terminates at Norden. Special services occasionally work to and from the main line. Plans are for a regular service from Wareham to Swanage to begin operating in 2016
|Preceding station||Heritage railways||Following station|
(special services only)
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