About SideTracked Caches
This cache belongs to the SideTracked series. It is not designed to take you to a magical place with a breath taking view. It's a distraction for the weary traveller, but anyone else can go and find it too. More Information can be found on the SideTracked Series website at www.sidetrackedseries.info.
Didcot's railway station
The railway has run through Didcot since 1 June 1840, when the Great Western Railway extended its main line from Reading to Steventon. During this period a stagecoach transported passengers to Oxford from Steventon. A few weeks later the line was extended to Faringdon Road station near West Challow, and eventually to Bristol. On 12 June 1844 the line from Didcot to Oxford was opened and Didcot station was opened at the junction. The original intended route would have taken a line from Steventon to Oxford via Abingdon, but Abingdon's townspeople objected to this idea. Otherwise, it is unlikely that Didcot would have evolved into the town it is today, as its initial growth was prompted by the coming of the railway.
The Didcot, Newbury and Southampton Railway (DN&S) linked Didcot with Newbury, carrying services to Southampton via Newbury, Highclere, Winchester and Eastleigh. In its latter years it was reduced to a rural backwater before its closure just before the Beeching cuts. The DN&S was closed to passengers on 10 September 1962 and to freight in 1967. At the eastern end of Platform 1, there is a raised section of the east car park, which used to be the bay platform for the DN&S line.
On 7 December 1964, local passenger services between Didcot and Swindon were withdrawn and the stations at Steventon, Wantage Road, Challow, Uffington, Shrivenham and Stratton Park were closed.
In 1985, a new main building for the station was built along with a new 600-space car park on the site of the former provender store to the west of the station for Park and Ride use. These were opened on 29 July 1985 by David Mitchell MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Transport, and on that date the station was renamed Didcot Parkway. In 2018, a multi-storey car park was opened, costing £20 million and increasing the number of spaces by 65% to 1800.
To find the cache you will need to visit two locations on the station forecourt (there is no need to enter the station building), do some simple maths and then it's a short walk to find the container which is within sight of the short-stay car park.
At the coordinates listed above you will find a ‘totem pole’ showing distances to local facilities and places of interest:-
A = Distance to Trident divided by 4
B = Number of the direction arms which have more than 1 word on each side
C = Distance to Hospital divided by 4
D = Distance to Ladygrove minus distance to Cornerstone
At Stage 2 you will find a large metal cabinet with a white plaque on it:-
E = Weight of cubicle (in kg)
The cache is located at
N51 36.(A+B+E) W001 14.(C+D-19)