The Granite Way

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The Meldon Viaduct is a scheduled monument and forms part of the Granite Way near Okehampton. Meldon viaduct from below.jpg
The Meldon Viaduct is a scheduled monument and forms part of the Granite Way near Okehampton.
Approximately in the middle of the Granite Way is Lake Viaduct, opened in 1874. Lake Viaduct.jpg
Approximately in the middle of the Granite Way is Lake Viaduct, opened in 1874.
The south-west end of the Granite Way is near Lydford Castle Lydford castle south east.jpg
The south-west end of the Granite Way is near Lydford Castle

The Granite Way is a route of 18 km (11 miles) consisting mainly of a motor traffic-free cycle/walkway between Okehampton (near the railway station) and Lydford. It was built by Devon County Council [1] (DCC) and is part of the National Cycle Network (NCN) Route 27Devon Coast to Coast’ between Ilfracombe and Plymouth. [2] It is maintained jointly by DCC and Sustrans. [3] Currently, the Way is supported by a Sunday-only train service during summer months to and from Okehampton railway station providing links to nearby Exeter [4] run by DCC and Great Western Railways.


The Granite Way largely follows the course of the former Southern Region railway line. [5] The route includes notable features such as crossing the Meldon Viaduct and Lake Viaduct [6] [7] both of which were formerly railway bridges and are of historical interest. [3] The Granite Way featured in Five of the best scenic bike rides in Devon. [8]

Much of the Way is within Dartmoor National Park.

See also

Related Research Articles

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Okehampton Human settlement in England

Okehampton is a town and civil parish in West Devon in the English county of Devon. It is situated at the northern edge of Dartmoor, and had a population of 5,922 at the 2011 census. Two electoral wards are based in the town. Their joint population at the same census is 7,500.

The Coast to Coast or Sea to Sea Cycle Route (C2C) is a 140 miles (230 km) cycle route opened in 1994. Combining sections of National Cycle Route 7, 14, 71 and 72; it runs from Whitehaven or Workington on the west coast of Cumbria, and then crosses the Lake District and the Pennines in the north of England by using a variety of both on and off-road trails, ending on the north-east coast in Tyne and Wear at Sunderland or Tynemouth. Sustrans state that it is the UK's most popular challenge cycle route, it is designed for the whole range of cyclists, from families to cycling club riders. Although a challenge with some hard climbs—the highest point being over 609 m (1,998 ft)—the C2C is completed by an average of between 12,800 and 15,000 cyclists every year.

Dartmoor Railway railway line in Devon, England

The Dartmoor Railway is a 15 12-mile (24.9 km) long railway line in Devon, England. From Crediton the line parallels the Tarka Line to the site of the former Coleford Junction. Heading west, it then serves Sampford Courtenay, Okehampton and Meldon Quarry. The section from Crediton to Coleford Junction is owned by Network Rail and from there to Meldon is owned by Aggregate Industries. In the past freight trains served the ballast quarry at Meldon. The line is leased to and maintained by the Dartmoor Railway CIC, who operate some services and facilitate access to the line by other operators.

Tarka Line

The Tarka Line, also known as the North Devon Line, is a local railway line in Devon, England, linking the city of Exeter with the town of Barnstaple via a number of local villages. Services on the Tarka Line are operated by the Great Western Railway (GWR) and continue across Exeter to terminate at St James Park. In the summer the Dartmoor Railway runs alongside the Tarka Line between Exeter and Yeoford while on summer Sundays GWR services from Exeter operate through to the Dartmoor Railway. The railway broadly follows the route of the A377 road and the River Taw.

Tarka Trail

The Tarka Trail is a series of footpaths and cyclepaths around north Devon, England that follow the route taken by the fictional Tarka the Otter in the book of that name. It covers a total of 180 miles (290 km) in a figure-of-eight route, centred on Barnstaple.

Okehampton railway station Railway station in Devon, England

Okehampton railway station is a railway station serving the town of Okehampton in Devon, England. Heritage train services currently operate on certain weekdays, weekends and bank holidays. A service from Exeter operates on summer Sundays as part of the Dartmoor Sunday Rover network.

Yeoford railway station Railway station in Devon, England

Yeoford railway station is a rural station on the Tarka Line serving the village of Yeoford in Devon, England. It is served by trains between Barnstaple and Exeter.

Meldon, Devon Human settlement in England

Meldon is a hamlet in West Devon, on the edge of Dartmoor in Devon, England. It is 4 km south-west of Okehampton. Its main features are the Meldon Quarry and Meldon Reservoir and the nearby Meldon Viaduct.

Exeter to Plymouth railway of the LSWR

The Exeter to Plymouth railway of the London and South Western Railway (LSWR) was the westernmost part of a route competing with that of the Great Western Railway (GWR) and its 'associated companies' from London and Exeter to Plymouth in Devon, England. Whereas the GWR route from Exeter followed the coast to Newton Abbot and then went around the southern edge of Dartmoor, the LSWR route followed the northern and western margins of Dartmoor, passing through the towns of Crediton, Okehampton, and Tavistock.

Sampford Courtenay railway station Railway station in Devon, England

Sampford Courtenay railway station is a railway station at Belstone Corner serving the nearby village of Sampford Courtenay in Devon. The village lies 3 minutes away by car or around 30 minutes by foot via the B3215. In 2018/19 it was the least used station in Devon and in the South West and the tenth least used station in Great Britain.

Bow railway station (Devon)

Bow railway station was a railway station serving the town of Bow and the hamlet of Nymet Tracy in Devon. Bow lies about 8 miles west of Crediton.

North Tawton railway station

North Tawton railway station was a railway station serving the town of North Tawton in Devon, England. North Tawton lies on the River Taw.

Meldon Quarry railway station

Meldon Quarry railway station is a railway station at Meldon in Devon. It has recently been renamed Meldon Viaduct railway station.

Meldon Viaduct bridge in United Kingdom

Meldon Viaduct carried the London and South Western Railway (LSWR) across the West Okement River at Meldon on Dartmoor in Devon, South West England. The truss bridge, which was constructed from wrought iron and cast iron not stone or brick arches, was built under the direction of the LSWR's chief engineer, WR Galbraith. After taking three years to build, the dual-tracked bridge opened to rail traffic in 1874. Usage was limited to certain classes of locomotive because the viaduct had an axle load limit. Although regular services were withdrawn in 1968, the bridge was used for shunting by a local quarry. In the 1990s the remaining single line was removed after the viaduct was deemed to be too weak to carry rail traffic.

National Cycle Route 69

National Cycle Network (NCN) Route 69 is a Sustrans National Route that runs from Hest Bank to Cleethorpes. The route is incomplete and consists of one long section in Lancashire, and seven short sections in West Yorkshire. The open sections are signed in both directions.

Devon Coast to Coast Cycle Route

The Devon Coast to Coast Cycle Route is a 99 miles (159 km) waymarked route from Ilfracombe in north Devon to Plymouth in south Devon. It skirts the National Parks of both Exmoor and Dartmoor and incorporates part of the Tarka Trail in the north, The Granite Way from Okehampton to Lydford and Drake's Trail from Tavistock to Plymouth.

Lôn Las Ogwen Cycle route in North West Wales, UK

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Bay Cycle Way

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  1. "Rail firm wins cycling award". BBC News. 21 October 2002. Retrieved 19 September 2018.
  2. "NCN Route 27". Sustrans. Retrieved 18 September 2018.
  3. 1 2 "The Granite Way". Retrieved 18 September 2018.
  4. "The Sunday Rover, Exeter service". Dartmoor Railway. Retrieved 19 September 2018.
  5. "The Granite Way". Explore Devon. Retrieved 18 September 2018.
  6. "Lake Viaduct". Retrieved 18 September 2018.
  7. "Film clip of Lake Viaduct". Devon Cycle Hire. Retrieved 18 September 2018.
  8. "Five of the best scenic bike rides in Devon". The Guardian. 27 April 2016. Retrieved 19 September 2018.