We have just launched a new mobile version of this site - m.trainspots. This page will use your smart device's GPS to loctate you and guide you to locations that are close to your present location.
Bishops Lydeard is the southern terminus of the West Somerset Railway (WSR), Britain's longest privately owned railway, which runs to Minehead. The station is approximately 7 miles north of the town of Taunton.
Railway type and traffic
A 17 miles preserved railway with 10 excellently restored stations. Mostly ex BR/GWR steam, plus a Class 115 unit, guests are frequent, especially at galas, and the Diesel and Electric Preservation Group, based on the WSR at Williton has a good collection of diesel hydraulics which can often be seen operating on peak Saturdays.
Bishops Lydeard station is in a sleepy location, on the edge of a small trading estate, open fields surround the western side of the station, and the trading estate is hardly visible. The station can get quite crowded in school holiday time, but most people are very pleasant, and trouble is incredibly rare. The station is supposed to be locked up 15 minutes after the last train of the day arrives, do not get caught out by this if watching the last train shunt it's stock around.
The station is located just off the A358 Taunton to Williton road, and is superbly signposted from Taunton, including from Junction 25 of the M5 motorway, but do not go into Bishops Lydeard village, the station is outside of the village, and the entrance is properly signposted.
The car park can get severely crowded on busy days, even the approach roads can be packed, although an overflow car park is sometimes operated at special events on a nearby farmers field, this improves matters. Because of this, the bus may be a better option at peak times.
Toilets are located in the station car park, and there is a very well stocked shop/cafe on the station (make sure you try the delicious sausage rolls), this is open until at least 17:00 most running days, (the books in here can at least take up an hour of your visit!) A pub, post office, shop and other amenities are also available in Bishops Lydeard village.
At least 4 places of accommodation are available in Bishops Lydeard village, Taunton has huge amounts of hotels/B&B's, lots of other places to stay are further up the line as well, some even overlooking the WSR!
Sun Compass using Suncalc by brought to you by Vladimir Agafonkin: It might be necessary to adjust the time to suit your visit, this link should open with the current day.
WSR, Bishops Lydeard Station
The sun can seriously affect pictures taken towards the west in the afternoon (the only way to take pictures of trains at the south end of platform 2), and also bear in mind that many engines work tender/bunker first towards the station from Minehead, all Minehead trains should operate "right way round". A reasonably quiet road bridge at the north end of the station provides the best known vantage point at Bishops Lydeard, as do it's steps, do be careful on the bridge, as drivers are known to speed along over this bridge. This bridge also provides a lovely frame for pictures taken towards the north at the north ends of the platforms. Videographers should be in clover here, other visitors being the only real noise concern, unless you on the aforementioned bridge, in which case mild traffic noise could obviously be a slight concern.
The information on these pages is supplied for the benefit of railway enthusiasts who carry out a harmless hobby, and through the medium of photography and video, actually promote the railway industry. Railway enthusiasts can also act as eyes and ears against railway vandalism, and as such should surely be encouraged to do so by the supply of adequate information such as is found on this website.
This site has been created to assist railway photographers in their travels around the country. It is based on the personal knowledge and experience. No liability can be held against the web site or its contributions for incorrect information. Trainspots will endeavour to check all information and corrections will be accepted and posted accordingly.
Advice as to the locations general environment is given as a guide on each page. This information is a GUIDE only. ALWAYS be careful with your equipment, Trainspots can not be held responsible for your personal security. Avoid leaving your property on display for all to see, be aware of your surroundings at all times. There are, sadly, people who will not think twice about trying to steal your equipment.
Trainspots DOES NOT condone trespass and none of the information on this site should be taken as a right to trespass on either railway or private land. To the best of our knowledge all locations are publicly accessible areas, where they are not contact information will be given to the appropriate authority for permission to be obtained.
The content of this site is created and intended for all age ranges but the content of sites linked from this site are not subject to the same intentions. Trainspots will attempt to check links for validity but as time passes and the site grows this will not always be possible. Broken, or indeed updates to, links should be submitted to the editor for inclusion in the updates. All links external to the Trainspots site are opened in a new browser window. Trainspots has been running now for over 10 years and there are imitation sites and guides to railfotspots. But we are a free site and we continue on the path we started out on over a decade ago to provide a useful guide to UK Railway Photographic Locations.