Shropshire Railways History Past and present

                          Cleobury to Ditton Priors

This Edwardian Railway was born when an Act of Parliament was granted on 23rd March 1901. However, due to financial problems work didn’t start on the line until 1906, eventually opening in July 1908. Initially the line was only used for freight traffic, with passenger traffic commencing in November of the same year. The passenger service was fairly sparse right from the beginning, largely because the line was principally built as a rail outlet for the stone quarries in the Clee Hill area. The passenger service was hauled by one of two trains, ‘Burwarton’ and ‘Cleobury.’ The line served two large quarries in the area: The granite quarries on Titterstone Clee were reached from Detton Ford Siding using a three and a half mile aerial ropeway, the quarries on Brown Clee were reached from Ditton Priors using a rope-worked incline. The early days saw good business; apart from the huge freight success from the quarries, 15,000 passengers used the line in 1910. Consideration was then given to an extension of the line South East from Stottesdon to serve the collieries at Kinlet and Billingsley, however this came to nothing. There was also speculation that the line would be extended north from Ditton Priors to join the Craven Arms to Buildwas Line at Presthope, once again this came to nothing. Following the peak of business in 1910, passenger numbers dropped quite dramatically and it took the outbreak of World War One to reprieve the fortunes of the company, a time when the line was heavily worked for the war effort. Following the war the CM&DPLR became part of the GWR. Sadly passenger numbers continued to decline and the inevitable closure came on Saturday 24th September 1938. During the Second World War the line served important ammunition storage areas and was reported to be an enemy target during the hostilities. After the war the line became part of BR’s Western Region and gradually ran down once again. The line closed completely on 16th April 1965, the same day as the Cleobury Mortimer to Bewdley Line closed.  The line closed completely on 16th April 1965, the same day that the Cleobury Mortimer to Bewdley Line closed.
Heading North at Burwarton