This project involved:
Great Western Railway

Case Study Background

Okehampton Station has welcomed the return of a daily rail passenger service to Exeter St Davids Station, along the newly reopened Dartmoor Line. From May 2022, an hourly train service to Exeter St Davids Station has resumed for the first time in nearly 50 years.
Ownership of Okehampton Station transferred from Devon County Council to Network Rail / GWR in 2021 and a comprehensive refurbishment of the station building was undertaken to bring Okehampton Station back into use.

Our Input

  • Working for our clients GWR, we provided advice on the strategy for letting both the commercial and community elements of the station building. Key guidance over
    anticipated management issues has allowed Okehampton station to open and operate as an unmanned station.
  • We prepared a bespoke target list of potential operators for the café opportunity which was brought to the market on an informal tender basis. We worked with our client to select a preferred tender bid and negotiated terms for a long-term tripartite commercial lease for the café, incorporating management and operational obligations for the café operator.
  • We worked closely with GWR, Dartmoor Railway Association and Dartmoor National Park Authority, all key stakeholders, to agree a long term tripartite community lease
    for a heritage booking office and waiting room, a Dartmoor National Park Visitor Centre, a Dartmoor Railway Association shop and offices / store for volunteers.


  • The Bullied Buffet opened fully within Okehampton Station in September 2022 and has been welcomed by rail commuters, locals and visitors to Okehampton alike.
  • Dartmoor Railway Association’s community facilities opened in September 2022 and provide visitors with tourist information as well as heritage information.
  • The Dartmoor Line has received 2 awards at the 2022 National Rail Awards. Passenger numbers have been more than double the forecast numbers, reconnecting the community of Okehampton.

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