SEE HOW wE'VE PROGRESSED SINCE OUR RELAUNCH IN 2017. Join BRHC to be part of it!
Bideford station welcomes a school visit
On 6th June 2023 we welcomed 70 children from West Croft school who wanted to experience the station because they were learning about evacuations during World War 2.
We showed them around the station, "sold" them a ticket to Waterloo, demonstrated how the signalbox worked, and showed a video of evacuees arriving and images of the station in the past. We were also able to let them speak to a Bidefordian who lived in the town during the war years and married an evacuee.
Bideford station Galas brought back into our programme.
The 150th anniversary of the station opening in 1872 was celebrated on 12th June 2022. This was our chance to bring back the idea of a special Gala Day - and this was it! Seeing the vehicles on display again was really great. The kids enjoyed the selection of model railways we had and the range of stalls was much enjoyed. And the crowds came yet again for a ride on our train.
Thanks to Lewis for organising the attractions.
Successful Nameplate Exhibition finishes
March 2022 marked the end of the exhibition at The Burton Art Gallery and Museum of our newly acquired set of nameplates from 34019 "Bideford". The exhibition also explained how the railways brought holidaymakers to Bideford in the 1950s.
The image shows the Mayor of Bideford, Councillor David Ratcliff, opening the exhibition on 29th August 2021.
The nameplates are currently in store pending the completion of our new museum in the coach at Bideford station.
A 2021 Christmas present
Right at the end of 2021 we gave ourselves a Christmas present. We had the opportunity to purchase a genuine Atlantic Coast Express headboard from a private collector. It was too tempting to resist as this is from the train that brought holidaymakers to the town until 1964. Currently in store, it will be on display in the new museum area of our coach once it's been opened.
And the Autumn of 2021 was great too. On 31st October 2021 our Planet diesel re-entered passenger service after a lengthy overhaul and a full repaint. We carried nearly a hundred passengers - for the first time in 15 years!
A great start to 2021 - our wish for the last 25 years achieved!
"BIDEFORD" LOCOMOTIVE NAMEPLATES PURCHASED !!
In March 2021 we purchased the nameplates and numberplate from 34019 "Bideford", bringing them back to the town where they belong.
Thanks to the Bideford Bridge Trust for their substantial grant and to others who made donations large and small.
The locomotive was named by the Mayor, William Chubb, at Bideford station in 1946 and it was scrapped by British Railways in 1967. The nameplate will be an appropriate companion to the coffee table that was presented to Mayor Chubb at the naming ceremony. This was donated to the Centre in 2020.
The nameplates, numberplate and coffee table were on exhibition at The Burton Art Gallery and Museum from August 2021 until March 2022.
2020 was COVID-year, when we used the time to maintain our sites and start collecting display items.
In 2019 the new Interpretation Centre was opened by the Mayor of Bideford and the Planet diesel locomotive was driven into the station after a lengthy overhaul.
Our sites restored by 2018.