00, Great Western Railway and Somerset & Dorset Railway
(Southern & London Midland & Scottish Railways), 8 @ 4 foot


Coal mining in the Mellis Vale started in Roman times and continued until the closure of Mendip Colliery in 1969. Limestone continues to be quarried in the Vale. Mining and quarrying lead to two serious efforts to improve transport in 1796 the Dorset and Somerset canal was authorised but incomplete it went bankrupt in 1802 and the Nettlebridge Valley Railway was authorised in 1874 but abandoned in 1878. Industry had to make do with inadequate industrial tramways linking to the Somerset & Dorset [S&D] and Great Western [GWR] Railways.
History has been changed with the canal bought to completion and an expansionist London South Western Railway [LSWR] driving a branch east from the S&D at Binegar and the GWR buying the Bilboa Tramway and converting it to a light railway. Then having sanity breaks out with the ‘mainline’ along the Vale becomes jointly owned by the GWR and LSWR. In 1923 the latter is merged into the Southern Railway and in 1948 the line becomes part of British Railways.
Chantry is a minor station on the Joint 'mainline' and has a spur to Mackintosh Colliery. An offshoot of the Pines Express runs via the Mellis Vale with Southern, Great Western and London Midland & Scottish Railways through coaches providing a connection between Southampton and Liverpool & Manchester - the offshoot existed but in the 'real world' ran via Midland and South Western Junction line. Other trains are local with coal and limestone as staple traffic.

A Southern E2 shunting the spur to Macintosh Colliery

Chantry Station

Tedbury Quarry Siding

Panoramas of the layout

Track Plan