The nineteen-mile single-track Broad Gauge line between Durston Junction (5¾-miles east of Taunton) and Hendford (Yeovil) was opened in 1853 by the Bristol & Exeter Railway and converted to standard gauge in 1874. However, the diminutive halt at Lyng, in rural Somerset, was a much later affair, being brought into public use on Monday, 24th September 1928. The station was located 1½-route miles from Durston Junction, the latter being where the branch to Yeovil diverged from the Great Western Railway’s main line to the south west.
KING ALFRED'S COUNTRY.
HALT AT LYNG.
The Great Western Railway Company announces that it will on September 24th open a new halt at Lyng, situated on the branch line of railway between Durston and Athelney stations, two miles from the former and one mile from the latter. This halt has been erected for the convenience of the inhabitants of the villages of East and West Lyng, which together have a population of about 300. The new halt is adjacent to the village of East Lyng, and should prove a great boon to the residents. People who desire to explore “King Alfred’s country” will also find the new halt a convenient point from which to start their excursion. During the last twelve months several new railway halts have been opened in the Exeter division of the Great Western Railway and the fact that the policy is being continued would suggest that the railway company recognises the possibilities of the rural areas and that their enterprise in this direction is being rewarded by the patronage of the public. It is understood the whole of the trains passing on the branch line will call at the halt, and the fact that cheap return tickets are to be issued to Taunton, Bridgwater, Highbridge, Weston-super-Mare, Langport, Somerton, Martock, and Yeovil will, no doubt, add to its user. [The Devon and Exeter Gazette, Saturday, 15th September 1928]
|GREAT WESTERN RAILWAY|
|LOCAL TIME TABLE.|
|SEPTEMBER 24th  UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE|
|TAUNTON, DURSTON & YEOVIL|
|WEEK DAYS ONLY.|
|YEOVIL TOWN arrive
|Saturdays only: Langport West, 1.20; Kingsbury 1.26; Martock, 1.32; Montacute, 1.38; Yeovil, 1.47.|
The halt was situated on the northern side of the single-track, comprising a timber-faced platform. Upon this was a small waiting shelter, also of wooden construction, and no lighting was in evidence. The platform’s name board was supported upon concrete struts.
In The Reshaping of British Railways report, published by the British Railways Board in March 1963, it was proposed to cease running passenger services between Taunton and Yeovil Pen Mill. On and from Monday, 30th September 1963, the following stations were scheduled to close:
- Lyng Halt
- Langport West
- Thorney and Kingsbury Halt
- Hendford Halt
Objections delayed closure of the route to passengers until June of the following year; on and from 15th of that month, trains ceased to call at these stations. On the same day, an improved bus service came into operation as a substitute for the railway.
2nd March 1956
The well-kept timber waiting shelter is seen, complete with fire bucket, from a train departing in the Durston Junction direction. The timber edging of the platform is in evidence alongside the carriages, as are the concrete struts supporting the name board. The pathway to the platform is marked by the timber fence behind and to the right of the shelter.
© David Glasspool Collection