Corfe Castle Railway Station is a train station located within the village of Corfe Castle, it was originally created to be an intermediate station on the London and South Western Railway branch from Wareham to Swanage. In 1972 the line was closed by British Rail. It has since reopened as a station on the Swanage Railway which is a heritage railway that runs from Norden station to Swanage. Since 2018, Sou Wester Railway has started to operate a Saturday summer service to Wareham.
The History of Corfe Castle Station
Corfe Castle is situated at the center of the Isle of Purbeck, at the beginning of the 19th century, the area around Corfe Castle was known for its supply of Purbeck Ball Clay, which was shipped out by a pair of horse-drawn tramways. Due to the presence of this industry, it attracted a number of railway promoters and once the railway system had reached Wareham in 1847, several schemes were promoted and failed but eventually, the Swanage Railway received its Act in 1881 and opened in May 1885.
The position of Corfe Castle meant that the station was built near the center of the village, the line was operated by L&SWR and the line was absorbed into the railway in 1886. Corfe Castle station was only an intermediate station and it remained this way until its closure by British Rail. As Swanage was developing into a tourist resort, additional passenger traffic began to come through Corfe Castle, however with the collapse of the clay and marble industries, and the increase in private car ownership in the 20th century, the line became unprofitable, this resulted in the line closing in 1972.
At the time of the proposed closure, a campaign was started to reopen the railway as a steam locomotive operated heritage railway, most of the track and station was bought by Dorset Country Council, proposals to use the railway route through the Corfe Castle gap were eventually rejected by the council in 1986, in the meantime, the Swanage Railway had started to operate a steam service at the Swanage end of the line in 1982.
There were concerns that reopening the Corfe Castle station would cause parking and traffic issues within the village so the line was extended a further half mile north to a new park and ride site that had been built. The new Norden station was built on this site and most trains will terminate there, Corfe Castle station was reopened on the 12th of August 1995, although the official opening was n February 1996.
A new footbridge was completed in 2007 by Swanage Railway volunteers that linked the two platforms at the station together.
Corfe Castle Train Service
There are a number of different services that run through Corfe Castle Station, there are an average of between 6 and 17 trains that pass through the station depending on the season and the day of the week. Trains that pass through this station will go on to Herman’s Cross, Herston, Swanage, Norden Station, Wareham, Poole, and London Waterloo via Weymouth.
The Stations is serviced by South Western Railways, West Coast Railway Company and by the Swanage Railway which is a heritage railway.
Corfe Castle Station Museum
As well as a working train line, Corfe Castle Station is home to the Swanage Railway’s Railway Museum, which is located within the old goods shed and adjacent rail van, the museum is open during most operating days.
The museum main feature of the museum is the Secundus, a narrow-gauge steam train that was built by Bellis and Seeking in 1874 and was used by the nearby Furzebrook Railway. The train was used until 1955 when it was then displayed in the now-defunct Birmingham Museum of Science and Industry until 200 when it was moved here, there are plans for it to move to the new Purbeck Mineral and Mining Museum which is still under construction.
The museum is located at the following address: Swanage Railway Museum, Corfe Castle, Station, Corfe Castle, Wareham, BH20 5EJ.
Train Ticket Prices
The main reason for visiting a station is often to use the train, while the fares vary if traveling to a specific station, we have detailed below the return fiars that will take you to any station along the connecting lines.
- Full Line Adult Day Return – £15.00
- Full Line Child Day Return – £8.00
- Full Line Family Day Return – £39.00
(A Family Ticket may be used by 2 Adults & 3 Children or 1 Adult & 4 Children)