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  • Andrew P.M. Wright

Purbeck Railway Circle January Meeting

Our next meeting is on Friday 12th January when long-time Swanage Railway volunteer, official photographer and press officer Andrew P.M. Wright will be telling the incredible story of the “Swanage Railway – The Last 50 Years”.

The original promoters of the Swanage branch line battled for 40 years to be allowed to construct the ten-mile branch line from Wareham to Corfe Castle and Swanage which finally opened in 1885. After 87 years of operation, British Rail controversially closed the line in January 1972, and tore up almost seven miles of track that summer in just seven weeks; an act of vandalism that would take some 30 years to rebuild. The herculean political and practical battle to rebuild the award-winning heritage line started from nothing in 1976 and culminated in a trial passenger train service to Wareham in the summer of 2017.

A Swanage Railway volunteer since the age of 17 in 1982, Andrew has been photographing progress on the line's rebuilding and development for almost 35 years; from a derelict and overgrown track-bed to a fully functioning railway line. Andrew has also been researching the fascinating history of the line for the same amount of time - unearthing a rich archive of photographs that tell the remarkable story of the railway's birth, death and re-birth.

Prior to Andrew’s presentation we will be holding the PRC AGM. Unfortunately, since full financial data is still awaited from the organisers of the Purbeck Film Festival, we are unlikely to be able to declare the full PRC financial results for 2017. More information will be presented at the meeting. The agenda for the AGM is below. Minutes of the previous AGM have been circulated to PRC members.

The Circle meets in Harmans Cross Village Hall, Haycrafts Lane, Harmans Cross at 7.00 for 7.30 pm.


For further information regarding this presentation and/or the PRC please contact the PRC Chairman at:

e-mail: or visit our


The Local Support Group for the Swanage Railway



1). Approval of the Minutes of the AGM held on 13th January 2017.

2). Election/appointment of Officers and Committee:

· Chairman, General Secretary

· Treasurer

· Programme Secretary

· Publicity Officer

· Ordinary Members

3). Financial Statement for 2017 (not yet available).

4). Programme Suggestions.

5). Any Other Relevant Business.

Average attendance at meetings during 2017 was 55 people.

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