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ARLEY STATION

Welcome to the Official Website of Arley Station on the Severn Valley Railway

 

Updated 02/08/06

Booking Office

Signal Box

Waiting Room

Gift Shop

Gardens

Riverside Walks

Refreshment Kiosk

Picnic Area

River

Arley Village

Arley Arboretum

Local Wildlife

Steam Trains

Victoria Bridge

Events

english tourism

 

Arley Station Gardens (continued)

During the early 1900’s the station seemed to ‘blossom’ in more ways than one, not only was the Severn Valley Railway perhaps at its ‘peak’, so too it seems were the station gardens.

Station Master of the day, Mr. George Batchelor had an apparent wish to have the ‘Prettiest Station Gardens on the System”, and photographs from the time show that he indeed succeeded.
The beds along the edge of the ‘down’ platform appearing to be beautifully maintained, packed with roses and traditional cottage garden plants. The sight of these beds must have been striking and moreover the scent, truly remarkable.


George’s efforts and those of his fellow station staff were justly rewarded by the GWR Company when in 1903, 1904 and 1905 the station was awarded ‘Special Prizes’ for such well-maintained gardens. Continued success meant that George was banned from any further entries, although he continued to be awarded with ‘Firsts’ in the subsequent years of 1906, 1907 and 1908, before finally being finally bestowed with another ‘Special’ for ‘Best Station Gardens in the Division’ in 1909.
Seven years of outstanding commitment and dedication in the pursuit of his goal; which I’m sure at the same time gave great pleasure to passengers and staff.

Well done George,
long may your memory and spirit survive within the grounds and gardens of present day Arley.

It is probable that Arley Station and its gardens were both at their best during this early Edwardian period, unfortunately  the line saw a sustained decline in freight levels and passenger numbers which lead to eventual closure in 1963, the station falling into near dereliction in the late 1960’s-70’s prior to restoration.

Huge effort and dedication by teams of volunteers through the early 1970’s brought the station back to life; we all owe a great debt of appreciation and thanks to these unsung heroes who toiled away to provide us the wonderful setting we endeavour to maintain today.

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