Welcome to the South Western Circle

The South Western Circle, formed in 1962, is a society for railway historians and enthusiasts interested in the London & South Western Railway (LSWR). 

The Circle has a membership of over 500, and aims to assist and encourage members to enhance their knowledge of the LSWR and its successors with research and quarterly publication of the Circle's magazine 'The South Western Circular'. Members also receive a quarterly ‘Circle News’ and when published any of the Circle’s Monographs, which contain comprehensive information about a particular LSWR topic that is too extensive for inclusion in the ‘South Western Circular’.  

The Circle holds five meetings a year in locations across the LSWR area; such as at West Byfleet, Fareham, Salisbury and Exeter. At these meetings members are entertained with presentations and guest speakers along with discussions on matters of LSWR interest, also our book sales service is present. Further details can be found on the ‘Meetings’ page.

To allow members who are unable to attend physical meetings to join in, meetings are live streamed on Zoom. The Zoom link will be emailed to all members who have registered with the membership secretary to receive Zoom notifications.

Membership benefits include access to the Circle’s sales service for the latest books and publications at a discounted rate, a comprehensive archive of drawings, photographic collections and line portfolios. These are being made available to members in the members area of the web site which will appear in the menu above after logging in. Further information can be found under the Services menu above. These services and the available archive information is invaluable to the railway historian and railway modeller alike.

Click here or on the ‘Joining’ menu above for the latest membership information, or you can click this link to download our Membership Application Form  


Next meeting of The South Western Circle

DateTimePlaceSpeakerTopic
Sat 07th Sep 202414:00ExeterPhil CollinsSeaton, Sidmouth and Exmouth Branches

The Waterloo Story

The Waterloo Story recounts the sometimes surprising history of this 175 year old railway station.

It’s a story that begins with its opening in 1848 as a ‘roadside station’, supposedly just a stop on the way to a planned for major city terminus that was never realised, through years of resultant chaotic growth which brought it repeated public ridicule, and finally to its ‘Great Transformation’ into the much loved station that we know today.

Please note: The free to view exhibition that opened on the main concourse of Waterloo station at 12.00hrs on Tuesday 11 July (the station opened on Tuesday 11 July 1848) has now closed (slightly earlier than planned). It will however return as a permanent fixture in the station this summer. In the mean time it can be viewed on the Network Rail website here 

LSWR Crest

Changes made when Twitter transitioned to X have broken the ability to embed X posta into another website, so we can no longer display SWC tweets here.

Instead you can follow this link to see the SWC twitter page in a new window.