Cotswolds Trivia - Transport

The Stratford and Moreton Tramway bridge over the River Avon at Stratford-upon-Avon.It is said that 20,000 people witnessed the first wagons roll in to Moreton-in-Marsh following the opening of the Stratford and Moreton Tramway in 1826.
The 16-mile long horse-drawn wagonway ran from the canal basin at Stratford-upon-Avon to Moreton, with a branch to Shipston-on-Stour.
The tramway was intended to carry Black Country coal to the rural districts of south Warwickshire via the Stratford Canal, and transport limestone and agricultural produce northwards.
The line functioned as a horse-drawn tramway for several decades and when the Oxford, Worcester & Wolverhampton Railway was opened through Moreton in 1851, the tramway began experimenting with steam operation. A steam-hauled passenger service operated between Moreton and Shipston until 1929, when buses took over.
The line was used by occasional freight trains until 1960, when it was closed and dismantled.
 

An "artificial" railway tunnel was built on a stretch of railway line in the Cotswolds in the 18th Century because the landowner didn't want it to be visible from his home.
Kemble Tunnel was built on the former Cheltenham & Great Western Union Railway in the 1830s, but only after Robert Gordon, owner of Kemble Estate, allowed the project to proceed on the payment of £250 an acre for the land involved and if a 400 yard section was covered in so that trains would not be visible from his home, Kemble House.


In years gone by, donkeys were used to carry groceries and other goods to houses in parts of Chalford, near Stroud, where the paths on the hillsides were too narrow for more conventional forms of transport.
The tradition continued until the 1950s, and in 2008 Chalford hit the headlines when a plan to reintroduce donkeys as a way of carrying shopping up the steep, narrow hills was announced.
The donkey transport scheme ran for five years, gaining widespread publicity, and on March 4, 2012, Chalford's community store and the donkey scheme were featured on TV in an episode of Countryfile.
• Watch this 2011 YouTube clip of Chester the Chalford donkey delivering shopping: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yiVMvcS5vDU
© Loving The Cotswolds. 2017.