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Bishops Lydeard

Postcode for Sat Nav: TA4 3RU

Bishops Lydeard Station is the southern terminus of the West Somerset Railway. It is four miles from the County town of Taunton and the M5 Motorway (Junction 25).

Please be aware that there is a maximum height barrier so access to the car park is for vehicles under 2.1 metres.

Station Facilities

Bishops Lydeard Station has a booking office and sells the full range of West Somerset Railway tickets. Please see the Fares Pages to find out more about fares from this station. The station has toilets, with facilities for disabled passengers and baby changing rooms. There is a large free car park and coach parking is available.

The Gauge Museum on Platform 1 has many items of local rail interest and shows how the railway affected the people who worked on and used the line. The Museum also contains a working model railway open normally at weekends and Galas. Platform 1 is also home to the Taunton Model Railway Group whose layout, Bath Green Park, is intricately detailed and can be viewed when it is open on Gala days.

On Platform 2 you will find the station shop and the Whistle-Stop Cafe, adjacent to the Signalbox, selling a comprehensive range of model railway equipment old and new, books and other souvenirs. The Whistle-Stop Cafe sells hot and cold snack items as well as a soft drinks and sweets.

What to see and do nearby

The village of Bishops Lydeard is situated at the foot of the Quantock Hills and is about five minutes walking from the station. The old village is a mixture of red sandstone and brick buildings which are all very charming to look at. Further up the road into the village is Mill Lane which, if followed, takes you to the village watermill which has been spendidly restored. Bishops Lydeard Mill welcomes visitors on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, Sundays from 30th May to 30th September (plus Bank Holiday Mondays) and Saturdays in August between 11.30am - 4pm. The mill is home to a working water wheel, the wheelwright’s shop and the blacksmith’s shop.

Once back on the main road further into the village is the Bird in the Hand Pub offering food and drink, garden and a children’s play area. Alongside the pub is a small craft shop.

The Village Church is the very impressive St. Mary the Virgin and the earliest part dates from the 14th Century. There are some beautiful wood carvings in the church and the village charter from 1291 can be viewed.

As you make your way from the station towards the village you will find the Lethbridge Arms, an old established inn, which offers food and drink including real ales in a number of rooms. The large wall in the car park is of historical interest as having been built for the playing of Fives, a Somerset game which was once very popular but which has now died out. A Fives Wall in West Somerset is unusual as the most popular area for the game was the south of the county.

Near the church is a fascinating relic of the tram system in Taunton, a post that supported the electric wires, now in use as a lamp standard. The trams were closed in the 1920’s and no one is really sure how it got there.

Other local attractions include Cedar Falls Health Farm and the Quantock Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

History of Bishops Lydeard Station

The station, opened with the original Taunton to Watchet Line in 1862 and originally had only the main building, Goods shed and the Station Masters House (opposite the Shop on Platform 2 - it is now let out as a holiday home) until the Great Western Railway added the other platform and Signalbox in 1906. The station is home to the West Somerset Railway Association, the supporting charitable body of the Railway who recruit and look after the volunteers and some of the locomotives on the line. Their offices are located on Platform 1. Please visit the West Somerset Railway Association Web Site for further information.

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