Great Yarmouth History

Railways - History of Local Transport

Yarmouth Beach Station

This station had the longest platform on the Midland and Great Northern line at 330 yards and with good reason. It was neded to accommodate the large numbers that came to the resort of Great Yarmouth during the summer months. There was a goods yard and loco sheds on the site with a normal contingent of 10 locos which was increased in the summer months. The site was closed in 1962 and is now occupied by the beach coach station

Station Hotel Gorleston

Apart from the odd bridge there is little that remains of the railway and its associated buildings. However, in Elmhurst Close the Station Hotel building still stands. No longer a hotel but a private residence. During recent improvements to the building the owners had the good sense to leave the hotel sign on the side of the house and trade descriptions on the garages. A visual delight and a glimpse of a bygone age. Well done!

Station Hotel Gorleston

Station Hotel Gorleston

Gt Yarmouth Railway

Great Yarmouth Railway

Breydon Viaduct

The railway viaduct was situated close to where the present road bridge crosses the River Yare at the entrance to Breydon Water. The viaduct was single track on an otherwise double track line and there were signal boxes at each end. The river traffic was given priority over the trains. The second span on the Cobholm side pivoted on its axis to allow large ships through, as seen below.

Breydon Railway Viaduct

Breydon Railway Viaduct

In strong winds it could take up to 10 minutes for the operation of the bridge. The five span viaduct had a working life of 50 years and was demolished to make way for the road bridge which has an operating time of 90 seconds!

What Happened to the Railway

The route the railway took is still followed today - it is the Gorleston bypass. The route of the A12 from the Great Yarmouth end of the Acle straight, over the Breydon Road bridge, straight on at the next two roundabouts and up to the third roundabout is the route the railway took between Great Yarmouth and Lowestoft. The A12 turns right at the third roundabout, the railway carried straight on at this point, through what is now a park. Then, on under the bridge at the end of the park proceeding through what is now the Cliff Park housing estate and emerging from Cliff Park near to the junction of the Links Road with Warren Road, and then on to Lowestoft.