DN&SR - Winchester Chesil Station
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This is one of a series of 4 caches set at the sites of former stations on the old Didcot, Newbury and Southampton Railway (DN&SR).
The DN&SR was opened fully in May 1885 and became part of the Great Western Railways’ (GWR) attempt to expand into London and South Western Railway (LSWR) territory. Although there was authorisation for a separate line into Southampton, political delays, objections by the LSWR and finally lack of finance meant the DN&SR only reached as far as Winchester.
The LSWR (who built the link from Winchester to join the London-Southampton main line at Shawford) insisted on using its own locomotives on the Winchester-Southampton section. Every through service to and from Southampton involved an exchange between GWR and LSWR motive power.
This delay meant the line never prospered even though it was several miles shorter than the route from the North via Reading and Basingstoke which had faster lines and greater capacity.
The line came into its own during the Second World War as an important North-South supply route to the South coast. It carried huge numbers of troops and military supplies especially during the run up to D-Day when it was closed to passengers between August 1942 and March 1943.
The line returned to its lightly used peacetime state in 1945 and closed, as part of the ‘Beeching Axe’ to passengers in 1960 and completely in 1967.
WINCHESTER CHESIL (originally CHEESEHILL) STATION
The temporary terminus of the line prior to the construction of the link to Shawford Junction 6 years after the line opened. The station buildings located to the West side of the line were built to a standard GWR design. After closure they disappeared under a multi-storey car park. The Southern portal to the 441 yard Chesil Tunnel (now a council store) can be found to the North of that car park.
NOTE: If you find a length of green plastic wire this has nothing to do with the cache.
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Coordinates are in the WGS84 datum