After nearly 50 years, daily passenger rail services are returning to Okehampton.

The Dartmoor Line opens on 20 November 2021, becoming the first line to be reinstated under the Department for Transport’s 'Restoring your Railway' initiative.

After a huge team effort to make the reopening a reality, Network Rail, GWR and partners look forward to welcoming you aboard. 

Route: Exeter Central, Exeter St Davids, Newton St Cyres, Crediton, Okehampton

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N Class 2-6-0 31874 at Okehampton, 1963 © Alan Murray-Rust :: Geograph Britain and Ireland

Okehampton Station © Rod Allday :: Geograph Britain and Ireland

Local teenager designs winning entry in Dartmoor Line logo competition - The Dartmoor Line

Local teenager Tom Watts is the winner of a Great Western Railway competition to design a logo for The Dartmoor Line, which opens a week on Saturday.

The 16-year-old imagined taking part in the Ten Tors Challenge when designing the roundel, which will feature on station signs, posters, timetables and a special train livery.

Year-round passenger services between Okehampton and Exeter commence on Saturday 20 November, marking the first reopening under the Government’s Restoring Your Railway programme which is exploring ways to return old lines and stations to service across the country.

Regular passenger services last ran along the route in 1972 and its reopening is expected to boost local businesses, the tourism sector, and provide greater access to education and work for thousands of people who live locally.


OkeRail is an organisation made up of representatives from a number of stakeholders to promote the reintroduction of a regular passenger service between Okehampton and Exeter. 


Devon And Cornwall Rail Partnership We promote the branch lines and the destinations they serve using both traditional and digital marketing: 


Great Scenic Railways The most scenic railways in Britain

Explore Devon and Cornwall by train and enjoy stunning coastal views, rolling green countryside, wooded valleys and fine river crossings.

Our branch lines will take you to picturesque villages, fabulous beaches, historic market towns and bustling cities. Forget the hassles of taking the car and concentrate on exploring to your heart’s content. 


Network Rail Introduction of passenger services to Okehampton

We're working in partnership with Great Western Railway (GWR) and Devon County Council to reopen the Dartmoor Line from Okehampton to Exeter before the end of 2021.

The reopening of the Dartmoor Line will be the first line to be reinstated under the Department for Transport’s ‘Restoring your Railway‘ initiative that will, for the first time in almost 50 years, provide a regular, daily passenger rail service between Okehampton and Exeter. The railway will also provide better access to and from the wider West Devon and North Cornwall areas.

Since the beginning of 2020 we have been carrying out detailed investigations to understand what infrastructure improvements are needed in order for GWR to operate passenger trains safely on the Dartmoor Line.

These ground and track investigations are almost complete and having received Government approval and full funding for the project, our engineers are now working to prepare the line and associated infrastructure for passenger trains to run later this year.

The work includes laying over 11 miles of track, replacing 24,000 concrete sleepers and installing nearly 29,000 tonnes of ballast before running test trains on the track ahead of fully reopening the railway to passengers. 


Wikipedia The Dartmoor line is a 15+1⁄2-mile (24.9 km) railway line in Devon, England. From Crediton, the line runs alongside the Tarka Line to the site of the former Coleford Junction where it diverges west to Okehampton. The railway is now owned by Network Rail, but was a heritage line operated by the Dartmoor Railway (a community interest company) from 1997 to 2019.

The route was originally part of the London and South Western Railway's route from Exeter to Plymouth, which was opened between 1865 and 1879. In 1968, British Rail closed the line beyond Meldon (two miles beyond Okehampton) as part of the Beeching cuts. The Exeter to Okehampton passenger service was withdrawn by British Rail in 1972.

During the Dartmoor Railway's operation, Great Western Railway ran a public service between Exeter and Okehampton on summer Sundays. Meldon Quarry was mothballed in 2011, leading to the suspension of the freight trains on the line carrying ballast for the rail network. The line is also used occasionally by other operators for training purposes, and is visited from time to time by main line charter services via the connection to the national network at Crediton.

It was announced on 19 March 2021 that the Dartmoor Line had been transferred to Network Rail and regular passenger services would be introduced by the end of the year. 

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