Brief history of changes at Exeter West

A new locking frame was installed on 18 April 1959 - a GWR 5-bar vertical tappett frame at 4" centres with 131 levers. This is implemented as "Exeter West (1959)". The layout at West box was unchanged since at least 1935 but by 1959 the station throat between the river bridge and the platforms had been track circuited and fouling bars replaced by track circuit locks. The scissors crossing between the Down Main and the Down Main Platform, controlled by Middle box, had been removed in October 1952. Exeter St. Thomas box was closed the following day.

The timetabled sequence of train movements assumes that S.R. trains terminate at St. David's as it is based on Summer 1982. The 1959 layout would not therefore be suitable for this service.

Exeter St. Thomas Up Distant (below City Basin Junction's Up Starting signal) became West box Up Distant and similarly the previous St. Thomas Up Starting signal became the Up Home, a new signal being installed as the Inner Home and the Home signal bracket became the Up Starting signals. A period of decline in the early 1960's accelerated when the Western Region was given the chance on 1st January 1963 to pay off old scores as the ex-Southern lines were transferred to W.R.

By 1963 S.R. trains to Central could depart from platform 4, a replacement signal with a route indicator was installed and the necessary facing point lock provided. This is implemented as "Exeter West (1963)".

In 1967 the connection to the engine shed was simplified making movements on and off shed to and from the Down side much more complicated. In 1969 the spur siding off the Up Central line was taken out of use, by which time the Cattle Pen Ground Frame had been removed. This is implemented as "Exeter West (1970)".

On 22 February 1970 Exeter Central 'B' closed (meaning that trains to Central could be allowed to proceed before seeing the Central 'B' distant drop). On 18 November 1973 Exeter East was abolished making use of Regulation 4A unnecessary as West box would then control a distant signal 2300 yards away (previously Exeter East Down Distant, beneath Cowley Bridge Junction Down Homes). On 27 February 1978 Goods Yard box closed and the Goods Lines and sidings were severed at Exwick crossing.