March Society learn about history of rail station

PUBLISHED: 10:47 25 February 2019

Some of the audience of members and friends of The March Society with Adrian Sutterby (centre). Picture: JENNIFER LAWLER.

Some of the audience of members and friends of The March Society with Adrian Sutterby (centre). Picture: JENNIFER LAWLER.

Archant

The chairman of the Friends of March Railway Station (FORMS) spoke about the station's history at the latest meeting of The March Society.

Adrian Sutterby, FORMS chairman, spoke to society members about recent activities undertaken by the group and gave a fascinating summary of the station’s history.

The original station was built in 1847 and included a footbridge, a level crossing and short platforms.

By 1885 it had become a major seven-platform rail junction featuring decorative wrought iron work - much of which still exists today.

Every weekend hundreds of day-trippers crowded on to the carriages to journey from March to Hunstanton via Wisbech, Emneth, Watlington and King’s Lynn.

However, from the 1960s, rail services were cut and platforms and tracks taken out of use.

The March-Wisbech line continued to carry freight until 2000. FOMRS was formed in 2009 and so will be celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. FOMRS volunteers have removed overgrown vegetation on unused platforms and lines, restored and strengthened rooms. There is now a fully functioning meeting room, a library room, an education room and another room is currently being restored to run a model railway.

Many successful FOMRS events have been held at the station and a memorial garden was recently created outside the station. This year FOMRS will be running a Model Railway event on Saturday May 11 and will hold a special 10th Anniversary celebration event on Saturday 7nd September.

The March Society’s next meeting is on Wednesday March 13 at 7pm in March Library with David Thomas, chief executive of Middle Level Commissioners.

The talk is ‘Where does all the water go? Living in a pumped catchment’, about the work of the Middle Level Commissioners and associated Internal Drainage Boards and the unique nature of the catchment, how it is managed and controlled. Also the UK’s largest land drainage pumping station and the 2018 Middle Level Act updating the Commissioners’ navigation powers.

Everyone is welcome. Members £2, non-members £3, with tea, coffee, biscuits and the latest news. For more information visit www.themarchsociety.org.uk or email info@themarchsociety.org.uk or email Jennifer Lawler on jal@lawler58.plus.com

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