St Ives Bay Line

From TrainSpottingWorld, for Rail fans everywhere
St Ives Bay Line
Principal stations (from south to north)

Penzance (Peak hours only)
St Erth (for Cornish Main Line)
Lelant Saltings
Carbis Bay
St Ives

The St Ives Bay Line is a railway line from St Erth to St Ives in Cornwall, UK. It was opened in 1877 by the St Ives Branch Railway, and subsumed into the Great Western Railway the following year. It was the last broad gauge railway to be built in Britain, and was converted to standard gauge in 1892. In 1979 a new station, Lelant Saltings, was opened between Lelant and St Erth. During peak hours, some trains from St Ives continue to Penzance and vice versa.

The places served by the route are listed below.

The line diverges from the Penzance-London Paddington main line at St Erth. The branch line is single track for its duration, and follows the coast for much of its length, making it one of the most picturesque railways in England. In recent years, due to heavy traffic congestion in St Ives, the railway has been promoted as a park and ride for visitors to the town, with the construction of new facilities at Lelant Saltings, close to the A30 trunk road.

Passenger services are currently operated by First Great Western. Previously, Wessex Trains held the franchise on this route, hence the Sprinter trains which operate on this branch line still carry the local tourist route liveries including a bright blue Super Sprinter unit titled ‘The St. Ives Bay line’. In the summer months when traffic levels are high, most services are run by 2 class 150 sets, and in the winter the branch is run by a single class 153.

The line was referred to in the song "Slow Train" by Flanders and Swann.

External links

Railway lines in South-West England and the "Great Western" zone :
Main lines:  Cross-Country Route   Great Western Main Line
 Cherwell Valley Line   Gloucester-Newport Line   Exeter-Paignton "Riviera" Line   South Wales Main Line  
 Wessex Main Line   West of England Main Line   
Commuter lines:  Severn Beach Line   Slough-Windsor & Eton Line
Rural lines:  Exeter-Barnstaple "Tarka" Line   Exeter-Exmouth "Avocet" Line   Golden Valley Line   Heart of Wessex Line  
 Henley Branch Line   Looe Valley Line   Marlow Branch Line   Par-Newquay "Atlantic Coast" Line  
 St Ives Bay Line   Tamar Valley Line   Truro-Falmouth "Maritime" Line