Wenhaston Archive Project History Notes

History Note No.8: Communications

History Note No.8: Communications
The Blyth Navigation and the Halesworth to Southwold Railway

The River Blyth has always been a means of communication. Boats could not proceed further than Blyford until 1761 when the Blyth Navigation was opened which widened the river and allowed boats to reach Halesworth.

The Southwold Railway was opened on 24th September 1879 and the journey from Halesworth to Southwold took 37 minutes over the 16 miles. Wenhaston station was built next to the only level crossing on the line. There were usually four trains a day each way. Owing to the advance of motor traffic the line closed on 11th April 1929.

Unmade roads and tracks were around for many years until the Turnpike Roads were built. One such road is now the A144 leading from Darsham to Halesworth via Bramfield. A portion of this road passed through a piece of Wenhaston parish and the powers that be promptly erected a Tollgate and charged fees for passing through! The site of this Tollgate is opposite the milestone showing London 99 miles placed a hundred yards east of the Bramfield level crossing.