Reedham can claim to be one of the most picturesque places on the Norfolk Broads, but for me the real magic of the place is finding a country junction on the busy Wherry Lines route from Norwich to Lowestoft, where a branch diverges off for Berney Arms and Great Yarmouth, complete with fine signal box, an array of semaphore signals and a working swing bridge, with a very pleasant pub alongside.
From a photographic point of view, Reedham has everything, with good vantage points from no less that three road over bridges, all within a mile of the station and one offering a view over the swing bridge, as well as panoramic views of trains as they head in a south easterly direction to and from the terminus at Lowestoft.
As if the timeless feel of an unspoiled country junction was not enough, what makes the Wherry Lines even more interesting is the daily operation of two loco-hauled trains – one being top-and-tailed by a pair of veteran Class 37 locos, while the other looks distinctly more modern, being in the hands of a pair of Class 68 locos.
From the station, it is well worth taking a circular walk, firstly heading east to a bridge over the line on Witton Green, close to the signal box, from where there are good vantage points back towards the station and, looking east, to the point where the two routes diverge at the next road bridge.
Next, cross the railway bridge and continue along Witton Green until it joins Church Road, before taking a right turn into Mill Road, to another over bridge. This is immediately next to a home and distant signal, the home being Reedham Junction’s advanced down starter, with the distant below controlled by Reedham Swing Bridge signal box.
From here, carry on down Mill Road and bear left at Reedham primary school to get to the third bridge location, this one overlooking the swing bridge to the south. Looking north the double track route bears left, with Reedham Junction’s up distant in view, along with a down home signal protecting the swing bridge.
Between passing trains, return to the road junction next to the primary school, take a left towards the river for a pleasant interlude at the Ship Inn, with its excellent view of the Swing Bridge. Complete your circular tour by bearing left at the primary school then heading west through the village until you reach Station Road.