About SideTracked Caches
This cache belongs to the SideTracked series. It is not designed to take you to a magical place with a breathtaking view. It's a distraction for the weary traveller, but anyone else can go and find it too. More Information can be found at the SideTracked Website
About Upton and Blewbury Station
The Didcot, Newbury & Southampton Railway (DNSR) received its Act for construction on 5th August 1873. The Didcot-Newbury section came into use on 13th April 1882, followed by the Newbury-Winchester part on 1st May 1885. Financial difficulties prevented the planned route to Southampton being completed and the company had to use existing lines from Winchester. The DNSR was absorbed into the Great Western Railway (GWR) in 1923, but heavy freight traffic was sent by less steeply graded routes. During World War II these routes were congested on many occasions and it was decided to double much of the DNSR and the line was closed to through traffic during the daytime from 4th August 1942 to 8th March 1943 to speed up the work. Provision had already been made in all the structures for double track at the time of building.
The line became an essential link between the armament and military equipment suppliers of the Midlands and the South Coast ports before and after the invasion of Europe. Prior to D-Day 16,000 military trains were operated over the line.
The section south of Newbury was closed to passengers on 7th March 1960 and the northern section closed on 10th September 1962. Through freight traffic continued until 9th August 1964.
Upton and Blewbury railway station was a station on the DNSR. It served Upton, with Blewbury and West Hagbourne being only a mile from the station. It was opened in 1882 to serve military camps in the area. Originally named Upton, Blewbury was added to the name of the station in 1911 to recognise the more distant but larger village in the Vale of the White Horse. In the latter part of the station's history, it also served the Atomic Energy Research Establishment at Harwell. The station was closed to passengers in 1962 and completely in 1964, along with the rest of this section of the line.
The station comprised two platforms, with the ticket office and station buildings located on the southbound platform on a passing loop. The northbound platform, linked by two paths across the tracks at either end for access, had a small wooden shelter and a signal box at its northern end. To the North of the station was a headshunt and two sidings, one flanking the southbound platform used for loading horses and other goods, the other siding curving to the east.
The station building, now a private house, is still in excellent condition with a recent extension in the original style. It even retains its original canopy, although it has also been recently surrounded by further housing. The original station approach and car park area has been named "Beeching Close". The cache has been placed less than 100 yards to the east of the former station.
(Text based upon the Wikipedia entry for the station and image taken from the Upton Village website, http://www.uptonvillage.co.uk).