|This is the trackbed
explorer's guide to the Bedford-Sandy route, based on the LNWR's old
'Varsity Line' from Oxford to Cambridge.
the route starts at the A603, about 0.6 miles from the town
centre at grid reference TL 058491 because, further
the land is occupied by parking for a bus garage and other
uses. It then proceeds for about 0.4 miles alongside the old
railway before it joins the actual former trackbed at TL 063492,
contrary to what is shown on OS Explorer map 208.
next ‘diversion’ is over a bridge across the A421 dual carriageway at
TL 089499 as the new road severed the former railway line when it was
constructed (in spite of much local protest).
is another diversion at Willington Gravel Pits from TL 098500 to TL
104501. Here, the signposted route passes through the wood to
the north of the old trackbed for about 0.4 mile, again contrary to
what is shown on the OS map: for this stretch the actual original
trackbed is overgrown.
comes a deviation of about 400 yds round three sides of a rectangle at
Willington Lock, as the adjacent Mill Farm bought a length of the
original trackbed which is now private land.
the former station at Blunham has been developed for housing and the
signposted route is through the housing estate and down to Station
Road, along the road between the abutments of the former railway bridge
and up the other side before regaining the original route.
by Michael Brooks
13th June 2017