Days Gone By: Communities lost a vital lifeline when Beeching wielded his axe

Felixstowe Station (named Beach Station after Town Station opened 1898) opened in 1877. The line rem

Felixstowe Station (named Beach Station after Town Station opened 1898) opened in 1877. The line remains open to the Port of Felixstowe. This photograph was taken in 1883 when this was the only station at Felixstowe. Mr Bell, the station master, is on the right. This was a popular stop for generations of families on a day trip to the beach until it closed in 1967. Picture: DAVE KINDRED - Credit: Archant

Trains provided a link to the outside world for towns and villages as the Victorian railway companies expanded with main and branch lines all over Suffolk.

Bramford Station and nearby houses in the early years of the twentieth century in a photograph taken

Bramford Station and nearby houses in the early years of the twentieth century in a photograph taken looking towards the junction with Paper Mill Lane. The timber station opened in 1846 and was badly damaged by fire in August 1911. A new station was built on the other side of the bridge. It closed in May 1955. Picture: DAVID KINDRED - Credit: Dave Kindred

In this week’s Days Gone By I feature some of the many stations that have closed. The early 1960s report by Dr Richard Beeching, The Reshaping of British Railways, saw many stations closed nationally and locally.

Small communities that for decades had been able to rely on steam powered trains taking them or their produce to larger towns saw their stations closed.

Some of the branch lines, like the service to Framlingham and Hadleigh, had an old world charm where customers and staff all knew each other. The station at Aldeburgh was known for its spectacular display of flowers, where porter, Billy Botterill, looked after the gardens from 1922 until the line closed in 1966.

Do you have memories of the closed stations in Suffolk? Write to David Kindred, Days Gone By, Ipswich Star/EADT, Portman House, 120 Princes Street, Ipswich, IP1 1RS or send an e-mail.

The station master at Finningham pictured in April 1964. Picture: DAVID KINDRED

The station master at Finningham pictured in April 1964. Picture: DAVID KINDRED - Credit: Archant

Billy Botterill, a porter at Aldeburgh Station, who took great pride in the station gardens for over

Billy Botterill, a porter at Aldeburgh Station, who took great pride in the station gardens for over forty years, winning many awards. Do you remember him? Picture: DAVE KINDRED - Credit: Archant

Bealings Station on the line between Ipswich and Lowestoft. The station closed in September 1956. Pi

Bealings Station on the line between Ipswich and Lowestoft. The station closed in September 1956. Picture: DAVID KINDRED - Credit: Dave Kindred

In April 1984 the signal box at Bealings was removed. Picture: RUSSELL WHIPPS

In April 1984 the signal box at Bealings was removed. Picture: RUSSELL WHIPPS - Credit: Dave Kindred

Capel St Mary Station was on the Hadleigh Branch line. The A12 road between Ipswich and Colchester h

Capel St Mary Station was on the Hadleigh Branch line. The A12 road between Ipswich and Colchester had to close to allow trains to cross. Picture: DAVID KINDRED - Credit: Dave Kindred

The Hadleigh Branch line from Bentley opened in 1847 and closed to passenger traffic in1932, with fr

The Hadleigh Branch line from Bentley opened in 1847 and closed to passenger traffic in1932, with freight services running until 1965. This photograph at Hadleigh Station was taken in September 1956 when a steam locomotive visited on a tour organised by the Railway Enthusiasts Club. Picture: DAVID KINDRED - Credit: Dave Kindred

This crossing keepers cottage on the Hadleigh branch line was at Bentley. A photograph from around

This crossing keepers cottage on the Hadleigh branch line was at Bentley. A photograph from around 1930. Picture: DAVID KINDRED - Credit: Dave Kindred

Framlingham Station opened in June 1859 and closed to passengers in 1952, and to freight in 1963. Pi

Framlingham Station opened in June 1859 and closed to passengers in 1952, and to freight in 1963. Picture: DAVID KINDRED - Credit: Dave Kindred

Parham Station on the line between Framlingham and Wickham Market. The last passenger service was in

Parham Station on the line between Framlingham and Wickham Market. The last passenger service was in November 1952. Picture: DAVID KINDRED - Credit: Dave Kindred

Haughley Station as it was early in the twentieth century. It closed in 1967. Picture: DAVID KINDRED

Haughley Station as it was early in the twentieth century. It closed in 1967. Picture: DAVID KINDRED - Credit: Dave Kindred

Marlesford Station closed to passengers in 1952. It was on the line between Framlingham and Wickham

Marlesford Station closed to passengers in 1952. It was on the line between Framlingham and Wickham Market. Picture: RUSSELL WHIPPS COLLECTION - Credit: Dave Kindred

Orwell Station was on the Felixstowe Branch Line near Nacton. It opened in 1877 and closed in 1959.

Orwell Station was on the Felixstowe Branch Line near Nacton. It opened in 1877 and closed in 1959. Picture: RUSSELL WHIPPS COLLECTION - Credit: Dave Kindred

The station at Aldeburgh was opened in 1860 by the East Suffolk Railway. It later came part of the G

The station at Aldeburgh was opened in 1860 by the East Suffolk Railway. It later came part of the Great Eastern Railway. It was the terminus of an eight and a half mile branch line from Saxmundham, the station and line closed in 1966. Picture: RUSSELL WHIPPS COLLECTION - Credit: Dave Kindred

Leiston Station closed for passengers in 1966. The line is still used by Sizewell Power Station. Pic

Leiston Station closed for passengers in 1966. The line is still used by Sizewell Power Station. Picture: RUSSELL WHIPPS COLLECTION - Credit: Dave Kindred

Thorpeness Station was on the branch line from Saxmundham to Aldeburgh. It closed with the line in 1

Thorpeness Station was on the branch line from Saxmundham to Aldeburgh. It closed with the line in 1966. Picture: DAVID KINDRED - Credit: Dave Kindred

Bentley Station, on the main Norwich to Liverpool Street line, closed in 1966. Picture: DAVID KINDRE

Bentley Station, on the main Norwich to Liverpool Street line, closed in 1966. Picture: DAVID KINDRED - Credit: Archant

Passengers at Finningham station shortly before closure in 1964. Picture: DAVID KINDRED

Passengers at Finningham station shortly before closure in 1964. Picture: DAVID KINDRED - Credit: Archant

Claydon Station closed to passengers in 1963. Picture: DAVID KINDRED

Claydon Station closed to passengers in 1963. Picture: DAVID KINDRED - Credit: Dave Kindred

The crossing keepers house at Baylham crossing on the main line was very close to the tracks. This

The crossing keepers house at Baylham crossing on the main line was very close to the tracks. This photograph was taken around 1930. Picture: DAVID KINDRED - Credit: Dave Kindred