The most beautiful railway line in Hampshire

The last train on the Meon Valley line
The last train on the Meon Valley line
The junction of Southwick Hill Road and London Road, Cosham, with a tram passing over the  bridge. Not a traffic light to be seen. Picture: GA Tucker

NOSTALGIA: Cyclist v tram in 1930s Portsmouth hill climb

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It was always described as the most beautiful line in Hampshire and here we see the last train over the Meon Valley line.

The final service had run on Saturday, February 6, 1955 but the following day the Railway Correspondence Travel Society ran a special for railway enthusiasts. And what a tour.

The train ran from Waterloo via Guildford, Horsham, Pulborough, Midhurst, Petersfield, Havant, Fareham, West Meon, Alton, Aldershot, Ascot and to Waterloo. There were also two changes of double-headed locomotives at Guildford and Petersfield.

The final part of the tour saw two T9’s on duty. The crews on the final part of the tour were, on the leading loco Driver Frank Tickner with Fireman Roy Vigors.

Roy was called up for the RAF during the war and had to bail out when his Lancaster bomber was hit.

In the trailing loco were Driver Tom Harding with Fireman Gordon Ballard.