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West Somerset Mineral Railway Project go to homepagelink to heritage lottery fund website

The Incline and Winding House

Burrow-Beulah pic

A spectacular piece of Victorian engineering, the Incline was opened in 1861 to lower wagons of iron ore down a 1:4 slope to the valley below.  It was then transported on by rail to Watchet.  Enjoy magnificent views across the Brendons to Wales, and explore the conserved Winding House 


Site Information

Scheduled Monument
Exmoor National Park Authority
Car parking

Site Map

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Incline and Winding House public access map

The Winding House

The Winding House was built to house the massive iron drums that wound the cables on which loaded wagons were lowered down and pulled up the Incline.  


As part of the West Somerset Mineral Railway project the walls of this Scheduled Monument were repaired and the ruined building made accessible to the public. 


An interpretation board in the Winding House explains the operation of the mechanism with the help of reconstruction drawings.  


Please note, that there is no designated parking at the Winding House. 


Access is only on foot along the road and via public footpaths and bridle ways.


Walking down the Incline
Walking down the Incline in June 2009
The repaired Winding House in June 2009
The repaired Winding House in June 2009

The Incline

As part of the project the Incline has been cleared and if you are fit enough to scale a 1 in 4 gradient you can walk the former trackbed between the Winding House and the iron steps leading onto the trackbed at underbridge 13 in Comberow.   


Please note that there is no parking at Comberow. 

Access is only via public footpaths and bridle ways.  There is however an Incline carpark that can be accessed via a track off the B3190 between Ralegh's Cross and Beulah Chapel.

Visitor tips

  • Go and see the working model of the Incline and Winding House at the Watchet Market House Museum

  • Ralegh's Cross Inn is an old coaching inn close to the Brendon Hill sites.  It also has a collection of historic Mineral Line photographs on the walls.  For details go to Ralegh's Cross Inn


Safety on the Mineral Line

  • Visitors are requested to use extreme caution when exploring West Somerset Mineral Railway sites.
  • Children should be kept under close supervision and should not be allowed to climb on walls or banks.
  • Take care on uneven ground.
  • Stout footwear is strongly advised.



How to get to the Brendon Hills

By bus - Check Traveline SouthWest.   Additional bus services for Exmoor


By car -  To Ralegh’s Cross Inn: Leave the M5 at Junction 25 (Taunton) and follow the signs to the A358 towards Minehead.  Approximately 1 mile after the sign for Bishops Lydeard, turn

left along the B3224 for 8 miles. The Inn is on the left hand side at a crossroads.


 - To the Incline carpark:

(open from Oct. 2010) Approximately after two thirds of the way between Ralegh's Cross and the junction at Beulah Chapel a track leads off the southern side of the B3190 to the Incline carpark in the woods below.  From there a bridlepath leads to the Incline.


On foot  The Incline can be accessed by via the public rights of way.  Ordnance Survey map OL9 covers Exmoor National Park, and includes the Brendon Hills and Watchet.  Other maps are also available from most Tourist Information Centres. 

Grid reference for the Winding House: OS GR ST 023 344.  

Grid Reference for the public bridleway meeting the Incline: GR ST 025 347. 


The Mineral Line on Google maps


Visitor leaflets

Go to the Incline in pictures
View down the incline from about 200 metres up slope
Go to Incline drawings
The Incline Survey Key Plan