Exeter
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Exeter has had a long importance on the railway map, starting from the arrival of the Bristol and Exeter Railway in 1844. The arrival of the South Devon railway saw Exeter transform from being the end of railway communication to the west into a busy through station with services for two companies. The arrival of the South Devon Railway saw the opening of Exeter’s second station that of Exeter St. Thomas, opened in 1846. The third station to arrive was with yet another company, the London and South Western Railway whom opened Queen Street station in 1860. 1862 saw the LSWR extend their line from Queen Street to join the Bristol and Exeter at St David’s which now had departures serving for four separate lines. St David’s station itself was also rebuilt with the arrival of the LSWR, passengers could now board departures for London in both directions.

In it’s hey day passengers at St David’s could board services for the capital or Plymouth in either direction, the Exe Valley and Teign Valley line trains commenced from its’ platforms and there were various local services to all sorts of places. It was a spotters’ paradise with locomotives of all sorts and classes bustling about its’ busy lines and between the various engine sheds, sidings and a like. In the summer the lines through Exeter were full to capacity with specials, almost nose to tail, carrying holiday makers to ‘Glorious Devon’ and Cornwall.

Exeter still retains its’ importance as an interchange station for local and long distance trains and has survived remarkable well through various stages of rationalisation. It is still home to various carriage sidings, a diesel servicing depot and the ‘new’ panel signal box. It still serves the capital in both directions, but sadly Plymouth is now only reachable by the South Devon route. Services to the Exmouth, Barnstaple and Paignton lines still call at its’ platforms. Exeter Central has been heavily rationalised with now only two platforms, no through services to Plymouth and the line to London has been singled in places although this is now beginning to be reversed and re-doubling is beginning to be done in places.

The 1980’s saw the signalling of Exeter and the surrounding areas change, with the reduction in manual boxes and the eventual control of the lines being transferred to Exeter Panel Signal Box in November 1987. Plans are now in motion once again to rationalise the signalling, it is planned that eventually the whole of the South West will be signalled from one place seeing the end of the panel and all the manual boxes that remain in Cornwall.
Latest Pictures
Exeter in the 1800's
Latest Pictures
Exeter
1900-1948
Latest Pictures
Exeter
1948-2000
Latest Pictures
Exeter
2000-Present
Exeter Panel
Gallery
Exeter East Signal Box
Exeter West Signal Box
Exeter Riverside Signal Box
Exeter Goods Yard Signal Box
Exeter Central
'A' Signal Box
Exeter Central
'B' Signal Box
Exeter Middle Signal Box