Eymore Cutting

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Eymore Cutting looking east from near Victoria Bridge

Eymore Cutting is situated between Bewdley and Arley at the south (Bewdley) end of Victoria Bridge. It is a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).

Eymoor Wood

The extract from the OSOrdnance Survey 6in map above, published in 1905, shows Eymore Cutting and the immediate surrounding area. The railway runs along the southern edge of the ancient wooded area of Eymore Wood. The cutting begins to the east of Eymore Farm and deepens as it curves and descends towards Victoria Bridge at a Gradient profile of 1 in 145. The signal post ("S.P.") immediately before Victoria Bridge is the distant signal on the approach to Arley station.

Trimpley Private Road Bridge was constructed when the railway was built in order to provide access to the Wood from Eymore Farm which was situated to the south of the cutting. A stream which runs through the Wood is carried underneath the cutting through a Victorian syphon culvert. This is included as item SVR040* in the Wyre Forest District Council Local Heritage List, which notes it as being an "extremely unusual feature".[note 1] The positions of the road bridge and the stream can both be seen on the map extract.

The Trimpley Reservoirs & Waterworks were constructed in 1964 and commissioned in 1967.[1] The land south of the Farm buildings is now the main reservoir, with the Waterworks situated on the area of land between the wood and the railway. Water from the reservoir is pumped to the waterworks via Trimpley Pipe Bridge which now also spans the cutting a short distance east of the road bridge.

The pictures of the cutting below are all looking west (towards Arley) and progressively travelling in that direction:


On 19 March 1991 Eymore Cutting was designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) by English Nature (now known as Natural England) due to its unusual geology. The designation summary is as follows:[2]

Status: Site at Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) notified under Section 28 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 as amended
Local Planning Authority: HEREFORD & WORCESTER COUNTY COUNCIL, Wyre Forest District Council
National Grid Reference: SO 767792
Area: 0.26 (ha.) 0.64 (ac.)

The cutting is notable as the only available exposure of fossiliferous Eymore Farm marine band, a Bolsovian Substage rock.[3][4]. It is a rare occurrence of coal-bearing mudstones appearing at surface level, first described in 1946.[5]

Unfortunately the cutting's geology has proved less than stable over the years.

  • In summer 1985 (before the area was designated as an SSSI), work was deemed necessary to remove some unstable rock. Part of the cutting was strengthened using redundant concrete pads from the former BRBritish Rail or British Railways yard at Kidderminster.[7]
  • Wet weather in the winter of 2000-2001 resulted in a rock fall on the west side of the cutting. Although the rocks which blocked the line were quickly removed, the cutting side remained unstable and English Nature required the SVRSevern Valley Railway to engineer a solution to the problem which would not damage the site. While this was developed in Spring 2001 a watchman was permanently on duty on running days to warn approaching trains if necessary.[8] English Nature rejected the use of a retaining wall or additional 'gabions' to those already in place, and opted for the cutting wall to be re-profiled at a shallower angle[9].
  • Another rock fall occurred in February 2005. This required further re-profiling of the cutting wall[10].
  • The ground between Victoria Bridge and the entrance to Eymore Cutting was one of the areas affected the freak storms in June and July 2007. The earlier rockfalls occurred in the cutting, just beyond the signal in the picture below.

In 2009 the condition of the SSSI was surveyed and assessed by Natural England as 'Unfavourable'. The assessment noted that "The features are only visible from the trackbed of the railway line. Vegetation growth has occurred and obscures some features. Rock-netting has been applied to southern cutting wall and obscures views of the features and denies physical contact with, and collecting from, the features on that wall. Small landslips on the northern cutting side are more of a hazard to the line than damaging to the SSSI, unless they result in the installation of further rock-netting."[11]

See also


  1. The Local Heritage List identifies the location as "Eyemore Cutting". This alternate spelling also occasionally appears elsewhere.


  1. Marshall (1989) p. 95.
  2. Natural England designation
  3. Wyre Forest District Local Development Framework Core Strategy Development Plan Document Sustainability Appraisal Scoping Report July 2007 (Retrieved 11 November 2019)
  4. The BGS Lexicon of Named Rock Units (Retrieved 11 November 2019)
  5. C.J. Cleal and B.A. Thomas, British Upper Carboniferous Stratigraphy, Springer Science & Business Media (2013), pp. 139-141 via Google books
  6. Berrow's Worcester Journal, reported in Marshall (1989) p. 47.
  7. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 79
  8. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 135
  9. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 136
  10. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 150
  11. Natural England