Didcot, Newbury and Southampton Railway
The Didcot, Newbury and Southampton Railway (DN&SR) was a cross-country railway running north–south between Didcot, Newbury and Winchester. Its promoters intended an independent route to Southampton and envisaged heavy traffic from the Midlands and North of England to the port, but they ran out of funds to complete the line to Southampton. The intended heavy through traffic never materialised, and the line was dependent on larger railways—the Great Western Railway and the London and South Western Railway—for support, which was not freely given. The line opened in two stages, in 1882 and 1885.
|Didcot, Newbury and Southampton Railway|
|Operator(s)||Great Western Railway|
Western Region of British Railways
|Line length||46 mi (74 km)|
|Number of tracks||Single and double track|
|Track gauge||4 ft 8 1⁄2 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge|
The Company was absorbed by the Great Western Railway in 1923 following the Railways Act, 1921. It became strategically important during World War II when huge volumes of munitions and troops were transported to South Coast ports, particularly in the preparations for the Normandy landings, and the Didcot to Newbury section was doubled, while the southern section was upgraded with extended passing loops.
Didcot, Newbury and Southampton Railway
The idea for a railway running north to south through Hampshire stemmed from a proposal for the Manchester & Southampton Railway during the Railway Mania of the 1840s. It failed to gain parliamentary approval, largely because of opposition from the Great Western Railway.
The idea of a direct line linking the manufacturing districts and the South Coast soon inspired another scheme, the Oxford, Southampton, Gosport & Portsmouth Railway, which was generally known as "Bethell's Line" after John Bethell, a solicitor, who was the principal spokesman for the promoters. It failed to gain parliamentary approval in May 1846. It was intended as a connecting line, but the promoters offered no explanation of how the break of gauge would be dealt with.
The earlier plans never progressed, but the idea of a railway linking the industrial areas of the Midlands was revived in the 1870s, when the growth of the railway network meant that main lines from the north reached Southampton via Oxford, Reading and Basingstoke. This was an indirect and complex route, and in 1873 a Parliamentary Bill was submitted for the construction of the Didcot, Newbury & Southampton Junction Railway. The Company was incorporated by Act of 5 August 1873, to build a 34-mile (55 km) line from Didcot on the GWR to a point 2 miles (3.2 km) north of Micheldever on the LSWR, whence access to Southampton was to be over the LSWR line. There was to be a branch from Compton to East Ilsley and a loop at Whitchurch to join the Basingstoke and Salisbury line of the LSWR. This line was to cross the GWR Berks and Hants Extension line at Newbury without making a junction there, as that line was still broad gauge at that time.
By 1878 the Company was on the verge of abandonment—a Bill was submitted to Parliament for the purpose—and "with no vestige of any financial support", but due to the exertions of Lord Caernarvon, a revised route was planned, connecting with the GWR at Newbury and running through the GWR station there; and forming the Micheldever junction nearer to that station together with a second spur at Whitchurch. These changes were authorised by Act of Parliament of 9 July 1880, but Caernarvon's energy had already led to the first sod being cut on the Didcot to Newbury section on 26 August 1879.
The Didcot to Newbury section proceeded rapidly, and was opened to traffic on 12 April 1882.[note 1] It had junctions with the GWR at both places and used the GWR stations, and the GWR worked the line. Now with energetic plans, the Company sought authority for its own line to Southampton, 33 1⁄2 miles (53.9 km) in length, to a location near to the Royal Pier there from Burghclere.
There was to be a station at Bargate, Southampton, and a 10 1⁄2-mile (16.9 km) line from Burghclere to Aldermaston, GWR, but the Micheldever line and the Whitchurch loops were to be abandoned. All this was authorised by Act of 10 August 1882. The planned railway would run across largely empty country between Newbury and Winchester before running down the eastern side of the Itchen Valley, closely paralleling the LSWR's main line on the western side, and joining the South Western Main Line at St Denys Station for the short final run into Southampton Terminus. The DN&S was proposed as a short cut to the coast, saving six miles compared to the existing route through Reading.
The Aldermaston branch and the independent line to Southampton were never built, and an Act of Parliament authorising yet further modifications also changed the name of the company; the word "junction" was dropped and it was now the Didcot, Newbury & Southampton Railway.
The line was opened between Newbury and the Company's own station at Winchester Cheesehill on 4 May 1885, after a ceremonial inauguration three days previously. The Winchester station was reached by a bored tunnel under The Soke; it was on a cramped site adjacent to St. Giles' Hill. It appears that the line was built as far as Bar End, where the goods facilities for Winchester were provided.[note 2]
Worked by the GWREdit
The DN&SR Company lacked the resources to operate its line, and it arranged for the Great Western Railway to work the new line, providing rolling stock and traincrews. At this time there was intense competitive rivalry between the GWR and the LSWR. In 1876 the Somerset and Dorset Railway had leased its line to the Midland Railway and the LSWR jointly, giving independent access from the Midlands and the North of England to the South Coast. The GWR was alarmed at this loss of primacy in the traffic, and it was pleased to undertake the working of the DNS line, which it hoped would give it access to Southampton, in LSWR territory.
Reaching Southampton at lastEdit
The Company had expended all its financial resources in building the line, but its southern terminus was in Winchester: a cathedral city but not the commercial centre that had been planned. In June 1885 the company estimated that it required £100,000 to complete the line into Southampton, and Winchester and Southampton Councils invested £15,000 and £70,000 respectively.
The intended works at Southampton were considerable: £100,000 had already been expended, much of it on land acquisition. Sands, writing in 1971, said,
The D.N.&S. had bought a wide belt of land stretching from Wyndham place, outside the present Southampton Central station, northwards along the east side of Hill Lane for about 1⁄2 mile, then north-westward for nearly a mile towards St. James's church in Upper Shirley ... Actual work seems to have been confined to the Hill Lane area where ... a viaduct was required ... The viaduct was completed for over half its length ... The unfinished viaduct has [since] vanished.
Deposited plans held by Hampshire record office show that the route was planned to run south from Winchester through Twyford, Allbrook (where it was shown to cross the LSWR main line at Allbook Lock), Chandlers Ford (crossing the LSWR Salisbury line to the west of Oakmount Road), pass under the current Leigh Road / Bournemouth Road junction, climb to a tunnel near the current Chilworth Arms Public House, descend through Lordswood and the current Sports Centre area to traverse the east side of Dale Valley, swing south east under the current Winchester Road, pass through the site now occupied by Shirley Junior School, run to the south west of the current Wilton Road before crossing to the east side of Hill Lane and heading south towards the intended bridge over the LSWR. This final stretch is the area in which work commenced and the location of the surviving embankment, part of the land upon which preparatory clearance and culvert work was undertaken later became The Dell (Southampton) football ground between Archers Road and Milton Road north of the unused embankment. The main passenger station was to be at Bargate Street, reached by a bridge over the LSWR Southampton to Dorchester railway, and this area was to be widened throughout its length with considerable reclamation work and a sea wall built alongside the Central station (at this time the LSWR Southampton West station was somewhat east of the present Central station position). Intermediate stations were to have been provided on the route and a story grew up that the St James' Park, Southampton site in Shirley was excavated for this purpose, often repeated in local books. Deposited plans, however, show the park site already existed within the surrounding road layout and was not part of the planned route, which ran to the north east of St James Church; its current sunken appearance was caused by later gravel extraction. There are Didcot, Newbury and Stratton (formerly Station) Roads to the south of this park. Station Road did contain a Police Station at one time. The only physical remnant of the project in Southampton is the tree covered embankment hidden behind current properties east of Hill Lane between Milton Road and Commercial Road. The deposited plans for the route through Southampton and current land levels suggest this was also the location of the viaduct work described by Sands. A photograph described as illustrating the part built viaduct appears in the book An illustrated history of the Didcot, Newbury and Southampton Railway.
The only way out was an accommodation with the LSWR; under this agreement the Company built a short connecting line from its Winchester station to Shawford Junction on the LSWR; this was authorised by Acts of 1888 and 1889. this opened on 1 October 1891. Seeing the danger of admitting DNS trains worked by GWR locomotives into Southampton, the LSWR agreed to the connection on condition that their own engines took over at Winchester and worked DNS trains on to Southampton from there, over its own line onward from Shawford Junction. For the time being GWR engines were forbidden to work south of Winchester, and there was always an engine change in the cramped station there until a pooling agreement finalised in 1910 removed this restriction.
This line, running over the Hockley viaduct, was completed in 1891, and services from Didcot to Southampton began shortly after. The DN&SR joined the LSWR line at Shawford Junction, north of Shawford station.
Parts of land in Southampton itself already purchased by the DN&SR (including the part built viaduct) for the final link were then subsequently sold off.
The LSWR advanced a loan of £16,000 for the construction of the extension from Winchester to Shawford Junction was built. This became due for repayment on 1 January 1900, and the DNS clearly had no resources to repay the money: in fact it was paid off with interest by Lord Wantage. Robertson says that this money was actually advanced confidentially by the GWR, no doubt to forestall any attempt by the LSWR to take over the line and gain access to Didcot.
Prior to the construction of the DNS line, Newbury had had a simple two-platform through station. The DNS trains now ran through the station and passenger trains made calls there. When the GWR completed its development of the cut-off route to the West of England from 1900 it diverted most of its Devon and Cornwall traffic via Newbury. Much of the Weymouth traffic had earlier been transferred to the route from the Melksham line. The GWR reconstructed Newbury station, providing through lines independent of the passenger platforms, and an enlarged goods yard, in the period 1908 - 1910, and the GWR insisted on a large financial contribution to the work from the DNS company.
When trains from the north-west of England started running through to Southampton in the 1920s, the proprietors of the DN&SR hoped their line would provide the north-south link, but in fact most trains were routed via Reading west curve, using the faster lines with greater capacity. During the 1930s the line was downgraded, with the removal of most passing loops and signal boxes that were not in stations. Station staff numbers were also reduced. At the same time, the section of line around St Catherine's Hill, north of the Hockley viaduct was moved west by around 55 feet to allow the construction of the Winchester Bypass section of the A33 road (now itself removed).
In 1923 the main line railways of Great Britain were "grouped" following the Railways Act, 1921. The DNS line was to be absorbed into the Great Western Railway group. The intended date of activation was 1 January 1923, but negotiations as to the financial settlement were not concluded in time, and the absorption was finalised on 22 February 1923. As an administrative convenience, a total of railways absorbed on the due date was published, and the official activation date "was in fact officially back-dated by nearly two months in order to be included in this total". The issued capital of the DNS was calculated at £1.31 million, and its net income in 1921 was £15,674. The Company had never paid a dividend on ordinary shares.
World War IIEdit
During World War II the line was a crucial transport link as southern England saw huge movements of troops and military supplies, with intensive use in the run-up to D-Day. In preparation extensive capacity enhancement works were undertaken, and the line was temporarily closed in the daytime[note 3] between 4 August 1942 and 8 March 1943; during this period the Didcot to Newbury section was doubled, as was the first two miles south of Newbury, as far as Woodhay. Crossing loops were considerably extended (from typically 300 yards to 500 yards) at stations between Newbury and Winchester, and some additional crossing points were established.
As part of this work a direct connection was made to the LSWR main line where the DNS crossed it near Winchester Junction, some distance north of the city. This was named the Worthy Down Loop and was provided to minimise conflicting movements at Shawford Junction, by which up DNS trains had had to cross down LSWR line trains. The construction of the spur required the removal of considerable volumes of spoil; it opened on 5 May 1943. It was closed in 1951 and after use as a wagon storage siding for some years, it was lifted in 1962.
At its peak the line was carrying 120 train movements a day. Auxiliary token instruments were provided at the extremity of the loops, and a considerable technical workload resulted in restoring the unbalanced token extractions.[note 4] The remote loop points were electrically operated by hand generator at the signalboxes.
An additional halt, at Barton Stacey (between Whitchurch and Sutton Scotney), was built in the early 1940s for military purposes, but was demolished after the war.
The traffic carried by the DN&SR largely consisted of heavy through goods trains with an average of eleven trains per day even in the 1960s when passenger services were being reduced.
From the mid-1950s the competition from road transport—particularly motor buses—was seriously reducing the line's income. In an attempt to offer some economy, diesel multiple units (DMUs) were introduced on passenger services on the northern section: the Pressed Steel Class 121 single-car units were commonly used. However, the line was making large losses and it was soon considered for closure. Passenger services to stations south of Newbury ended after the last train on 5 March 1960. Passenger services to stations north of Newbury then ended on 10 September 1962.
The route remained open for through block oil trains in connection with the Fawley oil refinery. A final passenger working took place on a Saturday in early May 1964 when a derailment at Reading blocked the route there. The northbound Pines Express from Bournemouth to Manchester was diverted over the DNS line; it made passenger calls at Winchester Chesil and Newbury. By this time the Chesil station platforms were in a state of dereliction; passengers were conveyed by bus from the main Winchester station and makeshift boards were used to give them access to the train.
The railway presented some massive engineering challenges as it negotiated the Berkshire and Hampshire Downs. The cuttings at Upton and Tothill together involved the excavation of around a million tons of chalk and soil and the Hockley Railway Viaduct is a notable feature as being the longest railway viaduct in Hampshire, and as having a solid concrete core.
There was also a tunnel at Winchester leading to the Chesil Street terminus. The engineering drawings for the tunnel put its length at 439 yards. Navvies and railway workers were paid 'tunnel allowance' (a wage bonus) for working in tunnels 440 yards or more in length. After protests from the workforce, the tunnel was re-measured. The tunnel was constructed on a curve, and the outside edge of the tunnel was found to be 441 yards in length, thus allowing the extra money to be paid to workers.
Winchester Chesil station was chosen for an innovative system of signalling, developed in about 1923 by L M G Ferreira of Siemens Brothers and Co Ltd and R J Insell of the GWR. A route setting frame was installed, with miniature levers: the frame was small, measuring 2 ft 10 in by 2 ft 4 in (863 mm by 711 mm). It was a forerunner of the one control switch system; the levers set up routes; when the lever was moved to mid-stroke the interlocking proved that the route was free and no conflicting move had been set up; and the points moved to the required position, after which the lever could be moved to the reverse position and the signal cleared. There were 16 miniature levers and 15 routes could be selected; the sixteenth was a king lever. The points were operated by a 120-volt supply from the signal box. Track circuits were provided at the points: they were described as "point protection tracks", that is, route locking track circuits, but there were no track circuits in the plain line. The night illumination was provided by oil lamps except for two signals located in the tunnel; ground signals were miniature semaphores of novel design.
Crossing the grain of the terrain, the line incorporated considerable gradients: the ruling gradient was 1 in 106. The down direction was from north to south.
There was a dedicated bay platform at Didcot (17 mi 49 ch) and the line ran east out of the station, turning immediately south, climbing to a summit at Ilsley, at milepost 12 1⁄2. From there the line fell more gently to milepost 7 near Hampstead Norris, climbing again to a second summit at milepost 5, then falling towards Newbury. The line joined the GWR Berks and Hants line at Newbury East Junction (milepost 0) and southbound DNS trains ran through Newbury station east to west, diverging southwards again at Enborne Junction (milepost 0). Again climbing to another summit near Highclere at milepost 4 the line next descended gently. There was a further climb from Sutton Scotney at milepost 10 1⁄2 to a further summit at milepost 20 1⁄2, whence the line fell to Winchester. The Winchester station was at 25 mi 20 ch, and Shawford Junction was at 27 mi 26 ch.
Stations and other locationsEdit
- Didcot (GWR station)
- (Didcot East Junction)
- Upton; renamed Upton and Blewbury 16 January 1911
- Churn; opened 6 July 1888 as a private station; opened to the public 1905
- Hampstead Norris
- Pinewood Halt; opened 11 September 1933
- (Newbury East Junction)
- Newbury (GWR station)
+ (Enborne Junction)
- Whitchurch; renamed Whitchurch (Hants) 1 July 1924; renamed Whitchurch Town 26 September 1949
- Barton Stacey Halt; opened 1940; closed December 1941
- Sutton Scotney
- Worthy Down Platform; opened 1 April 1918 after use for work; renamed Worthy Down Halt from 1951
- (Worthy Down Junction; spur to Winchester Junction on LSWR line)
- King's Worthy; opened 1 February 1909
- Winchester Cheesehill; renamed Winchester Chesil 26 September 1949
- (Bar End goods)
- (Shawford Junction with LSWR)
Churn station was opened privately on 6 July 1888, for the National Rifle Association (NRA), which needed to find larger accommodation for its competitions. Lord Wantage was a prominent member NRA and a Director of the Company, and hoped to encourage the traffic that might result. There was "no visible access by road, lying in a vast ploughed field". The National Rifle Association found the railway facilities insufficient, and settled on Bisley as their home for subsequent competitions. The platform was extended in 1894, and became a public station in May 1905.The station was made an island platform when the 1943 doubling took place. Churn features in Victor L. Whitchurch's Thrilling Stories Of the Railway, published 1912, where in the story Sir Gilbert Murrell's Picture, his detective, Thorpe Hazell, investigates a missing truck that ended up in the siding at Churn.
Pinewood Halt was opened to attempt to attract passengers from the north end of Hermitage village.
A passing loop was provided at Lodge Bridge, between Whitchurch and Barton Stacey, as part of the wartime capacity improvements; it was abolished in March 1950.
Worthy Down Platform was provided when the Royal Flying Corps established an airfield nearby; from October 1917 trains for workmen engaged in the construction used the platform; it was opened to the public from 1 April 1918. The RFC activity was later taken over by the Royal Air Force and in 1938 the Fleet Air Arm used it, its constricted site having become too small for RAF use. A new island platform was constructed in 1943.
After the Second World War, the DN&SR returned to being a rural backwater line. At the railway nationalisation in 1948, the line, as part of the former GWR, became part of the Western Region of British Railways. On 2 April 1950, the line south of Enborne Junction was transferred to the Southern Region, thus putting it under the same direct management as the South Western Main Line.
Passenger numbers on the DN&SR slowly declined throughout the 1950s, although goods traffic remained healthy - especially chemical and oil traffic to and from Fawley Oil Refinery.
Closure for passengersEdit
The decline in passenger usage on the line led to proposals for closure, and the section between Newbury and Shawford Junction closed to passenger trains after the last train on 5 March 1960. In fact due to congestion at Winchester City station, Chesil was used for short workings between Southampton and Winchester "although the station was officially closed" during the summer period in 1960 and 1961. Three return workings operated daily, operated by diesel-electric multiple units of type 204. The final service was on 11 September 1961;
The northern section of the line, between Didcot and Newbury was closed on 10 September 1962. The closure preceded publication of the Beeching Report, The Reshaping of British Railways, which was published in March 1963.
Closure for goodsEdit
Goods trains remained, but the goods facilities at the intermediate stations were gradually closed from 1962, leaving only the through goods services until closure 9 August 1964. The line was closed completely south of Newbury in 1965 and north of Newbury on 19 October 1967. Parts of the railway's course and earthworks are now used by the A34 road between Newbury and Winchester. The road generally closely follows the railway's former course. In villages formerly served by the railway, such as Sutton Scotney, the remains of bridges and earthworks are still standing, and indeed much of the northern section between Didcot and Newbury is still entirely extant.
A pressure group called Didcot, Newbury & Southampton Railway Revival is campaigning for the re-opening of part of the line for both passenger and freight traffic. In addition to diversions from the original route due to redevelopment, this is likely to require the modification or replacement of existing structures and bridges to accommodate both the W10 freight loading gauge and overhead electrification and the modification of cutting and embankment slopes to meet modern infrastructure requirements.
- Mitchell & Robertson 1998,[page needed]
- Robertson 2014, p. [page needed]
- Sands 1971, p. 3
- Sands 1971, p. 4
- Ernest F Carter, An Historical Geography of the Railways of the British Isles, Cassell, London, 1959
- David Fereday Glenn, Rail Routes in Hampshire and East Dorset, Ian Allan Ltd, Shepperton, 1983, ISBN 0 7110 1213 X
- Speller, John. Didcot, Newbury & Southampton Railway
- E T MacDermot, History of the Great Western Railway, volume II, published by the Great Western Railway, London, 1931
- "DNSR: archived articles". Retrieved 21 September 2015.
- Hamilton Ellis, British Railway History: an Outline from the Accession of William IV to the Nationalization of Railways, Volume 2: 1877-1947, George Allen & Unwin, London, 1959, pages 120 and 121
- Sands, T.B. Didcot, Newbury and Southampton Railway. p. [page needed]. ISBN 978-0-85361-023-6.
- Juson, Dave (2001). Full-Time at The Dell. Hagiology Publishing. pp. 52–53. ISBN 0-9534474-2-1. OCLC 269432112.
- Ordnance Survey of Great Britain, 1:2,500, 1879 series
- Robertson, Kevin (2014). The Didcot, Newbury and Southampton Railway: A New History 1882 - 1966. Southampton: Noodle Books. p. 45. ISBN 978 1 9064 19 83 7.
- Deposited Plans Hampshire Record Office Collection DP/384/1 Didcot Newbury and Southampton Junction Railway: deposited plan 1881
- "Friends of St.James' Park". fosjp.org.uk. Retrieved 24 August 2014.
- Karau, P.; Parsons, M.; Robertson, K. (1984). An illustrated history of the Didcot, Newbury and Southampton Railway. Didcot: Wild Swan Publications. p. 14. ISBN 0-906867-04-5.
- Colin G Maggs, Branch Lines of Berkshire, Berkshire Books, 1993, ISBN 0 7509 0316 3
- Peter Semmens, History of the Great Western Railway - 1: Consolidation 1923 - 29, George Allen and Unwin, London, 1985 reprint 1990, ISBN 0 04 385104 5
- Vic Mitchell and Keith Smith, Branch Lines to Alton, Middleton Press, Midhurst, 1984, ISBN 0 906 520 118
- Peter Semmens, History of the Great Western Railway: 3: Wartime and the Final Years 1939 - 1948, George Allen and Unwin, London, 1985 reprint 1990, ISBN 0 04 385106 1
- Newbury Weekly News, 10 March 1960
- "History". Hockleyviaduct.hampshire.org.uk. Archived from the original on 2 December 2013. Retrieved 22 November 2013.
- Sands 1971, p. 8
- C W Judge, An Historical Survey of the Didcot, Newbury and Southampton Railway, Oxford Publishing Co, Poole, 1984, ISBN 0 86093 149 8
- O S Nock, History of the Great Western Railway, volume 3, Ian Allan Publishing Ltd, Shepperton, 1967 reprinted 1982, ISBN 0 7110 0304 1, p29
- Kevin Robertson, Winchester (Great Western): a Snapshot in Time, KRB Publications, Bishops Waltham, 2002, ISBN 0 954 2035 1 8
- R A Cooke, Atlas of the Great Western Railway, 1947, Wild Swan Publications Ltd Didcot, 1988 revised 1997, ISBN 978-1-874103-38-7
- R V J Butt, The Directory of Railway Stations, Patrick Stephens Ltd, Sparkford, 1995, ISBN 1-85260-508-1
- Sands, 1971, pages 31 and 32
- Sands 1971, p. 41
- Sands 1971, p. 42
- Daniels & Dench 1963, p. 26
- Daniels & Dench 1963, p. 12
- Matthews 2006, p. 73
- Beeching 1963, p. 129
- Sands 1971, p. 49
- Matthews 2006, p. 74
- "Didcot Newbury & Southampton Railway". Didcotnewburyandsouthamptonrailway.co.uk. Retrieved 21 December 2017.
- "Guidance on Gauging" (PDF). Railway Group Standards. London: Rail Safety and Standards Board. October 2009. GE/GN8573 Issue 3. Archived from the original (PDF) on 7 September 2012. Retrieved 31 August 2014.
- Beeching, Richard (27 March 1963). The Reshaping of British Railways Part 1: Report. London: HMSO. Retrieved 26 June 2010.
- Daniels, Gerald David; Dench, Leslie Alan (February 1963) . Passengers No More 1952–1962. Closures of stations and branch lines (PDF) (2nd ed.). Brighton: GLO. OCLC 504319235.
- Matthews, Rupert (2006). Lost Railways of Berkshire. Newbury: Countryside Books. ISBN 1-85306-990-6.
- Mitchell, Victor E.; Robertson, Kevin (1998). Didcot to Winchester. Country Railway Routes. Midhurst: Middleton Press. ISBN 1-901706-13-3.
- Robertson, Kevin (2014). The Didcot, Newbury and Southampton Railway: A New History 1882 - 1966. Southampton: Noodle Books. ISBN 978 1 9064 19 83 7.
- Sands, T.B. (1971). The Didcot, Newbury & Southampton Railway. The Oakwood Library of Railway History. Oakwood Press. ISBN 0-85361-023-1. OL28.
- Mitchell and Robertson say 13 April 1882.
- Sands states on page 20 that "The Shawford Junction line required the building of 1½ miles of new railway, half of which followed the course of the Southampton extension from the point already reached at Bar End, Winchester", but this may refer to the formation only, not necessarily to an operational railway line.
- According to Mitchell and Robertson; but this may be an ambiguous reference to 24-hour closure.
- When a train was waiting for a path at the loop exit signal, the opposing train would deliver its token to the signalman at the signalbox; but the waiting train would now extract the token from the auxiliary instrument. Signal engineering staff department had to equalise the tokens manually.
- Ellis, H. (1959) British Railway History: an outline from the accession of William IV to the nationalization of railways, Volume 2: 1877-1947, George Allen & Unwin.
- Sands, T.B. (1971) The Didcot, Newbury & Southampton Railway, The Oakwood Press
- Karau, P., Parsons, M. and Robertson, K. (1984) An illustrated history of the Didcot, Newbury and Southampton Railway, Wild Swan Publications, ISBN 0-906867-04-5
- Robertson, K. (1988) Hampshire Railways Remembered, Newbury : Countryside Books, ISBN 0-905392-93-0
- Robertson, K (1988) The Railways of Winchester, Oxford University Press, ISBN 0-906579-71-6
- George Behrend, Gone With Regret, Lambarde Press, 1964; the author includes anecdotal material about wartime service life at a camp at Churn.
- Robertson, K. (2002) On Didcot, Newbury & Southampton Lines, Ian Allan, ISBN 0-7110-2955-5