The Portishead Line


See latest news on re-opening, initially for freight.
The Avon Gorge must have many  tales to tell. 
It has witnessed shipping and
slavery, three railways, a funicular, a road, the extraction of its stone from quarries, (see 1930s photograph alongside) and even an aircraft accident.
Dramway - 1930s

Avon GorgeThe Gorge has been visited by all kinds of  people, from Queen Victoria to the great engineer Brunel.  Hotwells, and later Clifton, were Fashionable.  Cabot sailed down it, too, discovering  the New World, at the Canadian end.  The Gorge leads - if you go far enough - and many did - to America. In Bristolianese, this might come out as"Americal" - Bristolians are inclined to add an "l" to a terminal "a".

Shortly before closure to passenger traffic in 1964, the line to Portishead is seen below, from a "down" dmu service, diverging from Bristol's harbour lines going right, at Ashton Junction.  Ashton Gate Halt - you can just see its footbridge - received numerous football specials, for which there was a prominent row of special gates.

Ticket
Ashton Junction
Ashton Gate Halt to Clifton Bridge Station
Just a short distance along, and discernible at the start of the Gorge, is Clifton Bridge Station. Traces can still be seen at low tide, of the ferry slipway by which the station was once reached across the Avon, from Hotwells. On the left, beautiful Ashton Park, an estate formerly owned, along with much of South Bristol, by the Smythe family.

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