Clifton Rocks Railway
Photo added by Higgypop Admin.
A funicular railway constructed inside the cliffs of the Avon Gorge, it closed before WWII and became a secret transmission base for the BBC.
Posted by Higgypop Admin last updated Mon 18 Aug 2008 at 13:58
Bristol, Bristol, United Kingdom
Grid reference: ST566729
No access - the site is secure as it is being restored as a tourist attraction - it is open to the public on some days of the year.
Visited by 6 explorers
Photos of Clifton Rocks Railway
Clifton Rocks Railway history
A forgotten engineering masterpiece; most of us pass by the Clifton Rocks Railway without even knowing it is there. Constructed with great difficulty inside the cliffs of the Avon Gorge in order to reduce its visual impact on the picturesque surroundings, this funicular railway operated for 40 years against diminishing trade. Its closure before WWII did not mark the end of its useful life as it became a secret transmission base for the BBC. Now a disused shell, with access so difficult that any potential scheme to revitalise it would be so expensive as to be unprofitable, this wonderful relic of a bygone era will probably remain undeveloped.
A voluntary special interest organisation has been set up to restore the Clifton Rocks Railway to it's former glory. The group say 'A major part of Bristol’s Victorian heritage has fallen into disrepair and disorder, remaining hidden from the people of Bristol, the South West and further afield'. The group’s aim is to raise the £10-15 million required for the restoration of the railway. The long term aim is to restore the tunnels four railway lines to working order and restore the BBC studios at the bottom of the tunnel, capturing both historical eras. It is hoped that this will make Clifton Rocks Railway as a sustainable visitor attraction and transport system.
In the news
Seventy years ago, as the Blitz began in London, the BBC set up an emergency studio deep inside the Clifton Rocks Railway.
One of Bristol's Victorian attractions was opened to the public for the first time in more than 50 years. The Clifton Rocks Railway is made up of four tracks inside one 500ft tunnel.
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