Nearly 70 Budleigh Salterton children gained first-hand knowledge of the town’s now vanished rail links when they met two former British Railways employees during a visit to Fairlynch Museum.
Yettington residents Colin Yeats, pictured above, left, and Roy Letten both worked on the Budleigh branch line railway until it was closed in 1967.
Both are seen in the photo here with children who were accompanied by their teachers and support staff.
“We’re really grateful to Colin and Roy for giving up their time,” said Fairlynch volunteer Kate Somerby, who had organised the visit to the museum by Key Stage 1 pupils from the town’s St Peter’s Church of England Primary School.
Budleigh Salterton was connected to Sidmouth Junction by a line from Tipton St John’s that opened in 1897 and six years later the track was extended to Exmouth.
The pupils were excited to be able to handle the ceremonial silver spade used by Lady Gertrude Rolle on 6 November 1895 to cut the first sod for the building of Budleigh Salterton station. They were also given the chance of wearing the station master’s cap.
L-r: Colin Yeats, Kate Somerby, former Fairlynch Chairman Roger Sherriff and Roy Letten, pictured after the visit and looking pleased that it had all gone so well
The theme of the school visit on 7 October was 'Changes within living memory.' Other areas of Fairlynch Museum studied by the children included the costume, lace and toy collections.