Branch Line to Ongar (2)

I have discovered that – perhaps not surprisingly – there is already a very well established mythology about the line to Ongar. When it opened in 1957, the trains were discovered to be much colder than the old steam trains, not helped by the fact that they kept the doors open while they were waiting at Ongar. There was also not a very good electricity supply, which meant that acceleration was slow and they could only run one train of four carriages at a time. As a result, people would drive to Epping and park there, which meant that the line was little used. But the rumour that John Betjeman wanted to retire to Blake Hall station was apparently an April Fool.

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