Brian Moseley, Plymouth
Webpage created: September 11, 2017.
Webpage updated: September 25, 2017




The first terminus of the South Devon Railway Company was at Laira Green, at that time on the north-eastern outskirts of Plymouth.  The land was extra-parochial and did not belong to either Plymouth or the parish of Eggbuckland.

Two train sheds were erected, one for arrivals from Exeter and the other for departures to Exeter.  It is said to have had a refreshment room in which "spiritualistic liquor" was banned.  The Station Superintendent was paid 100 a year.  Laira Green Temporary Station was opened to passenger traffic on May 5th 1848.  Goods traffic was accepted from May 1st 1849.

A special service of horse buses connected the Station with the town centre.  This was not without its dangers.  The "Atlas" Omnibus met the train that arrived at Laira Green Temporary Station at 2.20 in the morning but on its way back along the Embankment Road one of the horses took fright in the darkness and caused the reigns to break.  'The vehicle rattled along the road at a fearful rate, until it reached the turnpike gate, when coming into collision with one of the posts, it was unset, and greatly damaged, the coachman was precipitated into the road, one of the horses was killed, and an inside passenger was severely bruised.  Three other passengers, who were also fortunately on the inside, sustained no injury, being more frightened than hurt.'   While the passengers were recovering the second horse ran off but was later found standing quietly at its stable door  in Plymouth.  The coachman sustained severe injuries but none of his bones were broken, reported the Plymouth, Devonport and Stonehouse Herald.

Once the line had been extended into the Borough of Plymouth and a new terminal station erected at Millbay, Laira Green Temporary station was closed as from April 4th 1849.  The former Arrivals train shed was moved to Coxside in 1852, where it became the Sutton Harbour Goods Station.