A Branch Line Railway with John Betjeman

First transmitted in 1963, John Betjeman looks at the Evercreech Junction to Burnham-on-Sea railway line in Somerset.

Betjeman provides a unique profile of a working steam branch line railway as he travels along the original part of the Somerset Central Railway. Examining towns and stations along the way, Betjeman laments the tragic decline of steam railways. The journey culminates with a stroll around Highbridge Wharf, sentimentally narrated with a poem that sums up Betjeman's despair; 'Highbridge Wharf, your hopes have died...'.

Release date:

Available now

27 minutes

Last on

Sun 9 Jun 2013 19:05

BBC Four Steam Railways Collection

BBC Four Steam Railways Collection
This programme is part of a collection of programmes celebrating Britain’s extraordinary Steam Railway legacy.

Go to the BBC Four Steam Railways Collection

BBC Four Betjeman Collection

BBC Four Betjeman Collection
Rediscover the documentaries that made Betjeman a much-loved figure on British television.

BBC Four Betjeman Collection

About BBC Four Collection programmes

Programmes are selected, in part, for their historical context and reflect the broadcast standards and attitudes of their time, which may not accord to some current BBC editorial guidelines. We aim to select programmes which can be shown in their entirety but in some cases edits are required.


Role Contributor
NarratorJohn Betjeman
Visual EditorConstance Dunn
ProducerBrian Johnson

Featured in...