Sidetracked - Dartmouth Traditional Geocache
Calluna Tib: As there has been no response to the previous log requesting that this cache is checked I have no option but to archive it.
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Sidetracked cache in view of the old station building and adjacent to the boatfloat. This is a very, very busy location, particularly in summer, so stealth is required!
The cache is a magnetic Nano
Can people make sure both sides of the log sheet are used as it seems to be more popular than I expected!
The Dartmouth and Torbay Railway was frustrated in its efforts to build a line across the River Dart and so was forced to terminate its line on the east side of the river. A site near the floating bridge (a chain ferry) to Dartmouth was preferred but the site was too narrow and so it was extended into Kingswear.
A site on the quay in Dartmouth was obtained and an 8 feet (2.4 m) wide jetty provided to accommodate a ferry from Kingswear. An 83 feet (25 m) long pier was built out from the quay, and a 60 feet (18m) jetty linked this with a pontoon to which the ferry could moor. The jetty was hinged to the pier and so could rise and fall with the jetty as the tide went in and out. The pontoon was 58 feet (18 m) long and up to 18 feet (5.5 m) wide, and a hut was situated on it as a ticket office. The station opened with the railway on 16 August 1864.
The railway was leased to the South Devon Railway Company from 1 January 1866 and this in turn amalgamated with the Great Western Railway on 1 February 1876.
Dartmouth station in 1970.The town of Dartmouth instigated improvements to the waterfront in 1884, which saw a new embankment built north and south of the railway jetty, but the railway and town failed to agree on who was to pay to complete the new embankment at the site of the jetty and so a gap was left for five years. Eventually an agreement was reached and a new jetty provided. This was 13 feet 6 inches (4m) wide and 78 feet (24m) long, and connected to a new covered pontoon, 70 feet (21 m) by 30 feet (9.1 m). A new station building was provided on the shore, on the north side of the jetty.
The station master at Dartmouth was paid more than his colleague at Kingswear due to the important traffic to HMS Britannia (as it was known then), the Royal Naval College, Dartmouth.
The railway was closed on 28 October 1972, and Dartmouth station closed at the same time. The railway was immediately conveyed to the Dart Valley Railway which was already operating the railway from Totnes to Buckfastleigh railway station, as a heritage railway. It is currently operated by the Paignton and Dartmouth Steam Railway who also operate a Kingswear to Dartmouth ferry, but not Dartmouth station which is now a café.
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