Ryall Military Railway
The hamlet of Ryall is situated roughly 1km to the south of what was Beaminster Road station on the Dorchester & Exeter Railway. It was here that a small military training camp was established in 1914 for local regiments.
Initially there was no connecting railway involved in the construction of the accomodation huts at Ryall, the civil engineering company of Stuart & Co. were specialists in the building military camps. Due to the extreme rural nature of the lanes, construction of a light railway from Beaminster Road station was deemed essential and approved by A.W. Szlumper, the LSWR chief engineer at Waterloo in early 1915, the railway was soon finished and opened for inspection on 15th October 1915 after Lt.Col. Drewitt had approved it on behalf of the War Department.
Due to the topography, the line was not easily worked and required the services of an Adams 0415, hired from the LSWR and a Peckett B2 'Westminster'.
424 in 1915
Post-1918, the line survived to serve the strategic store established on the site but the line was placed on 'care and maintenance' with but one locomotive - Westminster. In early '39 the onset of hostilities brought new life to the line with the addition of a Fowler 0-4-0DM until it was transferred to West Moors Defence Fuels.
After nationalisation of the railways, the remaining the Peckett was sold into industrial use and all traffic to the line was by BR locos, normally one of Dorchester's 700 or 0395 on light goods.