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By Routemaster to the Lost Village of Imber


Saturday 17 August 2019

First Class Non-Dining is virtually full and online bookings have closed. Please call the office to purchase the last few seats.

On Salisbury Plain, far from the public gaze, the village of Imber has a population of precisely zero. Its residents were evicted just before Christmas 1943 by the MoD, in order to step up army training in advance of D-Day. The villagers were promised that their village would be returned to them after the war but this was not to be and over seventy years on it is still uninhabited, much of it having been destroyed. It remains in use for army training purposes but the connecting road over the Plain to Imber is open to the public on a very limited number of occasions each year.

Imberbus is an unusual event by any standards. Since 2009, on just one day a year, an intensive service of preserved London Routemaster Buses has operated between Warminster Station and Imber, continuing to remote spots such as New Zealand Farm and the curiously-named Brazen Bottom. The event has grown and the 2018 event featured twenty two buses, the preserved vehicles being joined by a few present day Routemasters, courtesy of Transport for London. The annual event has raised many thousands of pounds for the British Legion and for the upkeep of Imber Church, one of very few buildings to have survived intact.

This year our train will match the buses perfectly, the 4TC unit being adorned in red London Transport livery. An Imberbus rover ticket is included so you can travel to each of the Imberbus destinations aboard your choice of Routemaster – old or new, long or short, red or green! You can access parts of Imber itself, and the church will be open. You will also have time to look around the town of Warminster itself during our break of around five hours. The station is close to the town centre. On the way home, for added interest, we take a diversion via Romsey, Southampton and Winchester.

Note that First Class accommodation is in side-corridor six-seat compartments; most Standard accommodation is in open style carriages at bays of four seats.

All timings are provisional and intended only as a guide.

StationDepartArrive
London Waterloo08.4521.25
Woking (for M25)09.3020.45
Basingstoke10.0520.10

  • Departing Station

  • Standard Class

    All fares include an Imberbus Rover Ticket. Light refreshments will be available.
  • Price: £ 82.50
  • Price: £ 72.50