'Caring for the local environment'
The Churwell Woodland Railway (CWR) is a 7 1/4” (minimum) gauge railway, built by the Churwell Environmental Volunteers (CEV). The line was laid out on ground reclaimed from its covering of brambles and nettles. The railway opened to the public at Easter 2014 as a simple 100 feet of track and ran on special event days in conjunction with other woodland activities.
Work on an extension began in February 2015 and by June all the necessary earthworks (cuttings & embankments) had been formed and track foundations laid. As volunteers, CEV are very good at begging materials, often acting as a ‘home’ for otherwise unwanted stuff and very soon enough material was obtained to build a bridge and finish the job! The extension formed a loop around a little valley containing an attractive waterfall.
The completed extension ran publicly and for the first time at our Christmas Trimming event in December 2015 where the Santa Express provided excitement to both children and not so young locals which included a visit to Santa’s Grotto part way around the trip.
In January 2016 we began to develop the station area, building a turntable for our locos that allowed us to run the locomotive around its train (and to turn it to face the correct way when necessary!). A secure shed for the rolling stock was completed during the Spring of 2016. This was formed from a 1metre tube sunk into an earth bank and then covered to blend it into the surrounding woodland.
At first the railway only operated as an attraction in conjunction with other woodland events, organised by the CEV – the Easter Egg Hunt, the Big Summer Woodland Event and the Santa Express, but during 2016 we were able to open more often (twice monthly) to enable our supporters to enjoy a short ride through the woods. We now run every 2nd and 4th Saturday of the month from April to October, generally from 2-4pm. Our website and Facebook pages carry all the lastest up-to-date information.
We are happy to provide train rides for groups such as schools and youth groups by prior arrangement. Contact the General Manager Stephen Seale at [email protected] for further details
For more information on our railway, its origins, its construction and the engines please visit our sister web site by clicking on www.churwellwoodlandrailway.simplesite.com or the link below.