Between October 2020 and June 2021, Dorset Highways removed the disused railway tracks along the heavily trafficked areas of Weymouth harbourside.
The work was funded by the Department for Transport (DfT) following an anouncement of the successful joint bid with Network Rail for funding to dismantle and remove the rails, which posed difficulties for all road-users.
Previous trials to infill between the rails in heavily trafficked areas had limited effectiveness – showing that a material infill would only last for a short time and would have significant maintenance requirements, causing frequent disruption and being an inefficient use of funds. It also did not resolve the issue of the slippery surface of the tracks when wet.
The redundant railway line ran along the northern side of the harbour from the peninsula area along Custom House Quay and Commercial Road to King Street. They were fully decommissioned and could not be repurposed for other uses.
Two sections of track have been kept in place to preserve some historic element of the Weymouth Branch Line – with a 30m section at the start of the line in Commercial Road and another section in ‘The Loop’ near Cosens Quay Car Park left in place.