The Longparish Branch Line 2022


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Opened as a twin track line in 1885, singled in 1913, closed to passengers in 1931, finally closed in 1956 and explored by Dumpman Films between 2017 and 2022. Also known as The Hurstbourne Line.

A detailed trek across a representative sample of the 7 miles of disused track bed between Fullerton Junction and Whitchurch station in Hampshire.

Starting at Fullerton Junction, a variety of views show the relationship between the Andover line and the Hurstbourne line, before moving north towards Wherwell, picking up a variety of views en route.

The owners of Wherwell stationmaster’s house kindly allowed filming in their back garden, showing the filled in track bed and a tantalising view of remaining platform. Deep cuttings and towering embankments are travelled between Wherwell and Longparish, using public footpaths that cross the line to obtain views where private sections prevented access.

In 2018, the owners of Longparish stationmaster’s house kindly allowed access for filming. Aside from the delightful house, the crumbling platform edge is seen, along with a wonderfully, drunken-angled loading gauge. Although now overgrown, the site of the large concrete hardstanding area used by the M.O.D. for the loading and unloading of bombs and munitions is shown from the platform. Just north of the A303 shows the site of where the line was cut in 1934, changing it from a through route to a branch.

Private sections of track bed north of Longparish were viewed from proximate public footpaths, with permission to access the splendid twin bore skew bridge at Apsley and the track bed leading to Hurstbourne Junction from the missing Harroway bridge. Views of the Hurstbourne viaduct were taken in, along with some remains of Hurstbourne Station, before arriving at Whitchurch Station. The site of and bridge remains of the unfinished loop which was to join up with the Didcot Newbury & Southampton line are shown, along with a quick view through the tunnel under Whitchurch Station.

Includes constant, well-informed commentary, reference to a vintage map and a slide show of stills.

Running time: 2 hours (2 x dvds). DVD Region 0 (should play on any machine).

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