Defunct heritage railways

Discussion in 'Railtours & Preservation' started by MidnightFlyer, 12 Jan 2013.

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  1. MidnightFlyer

    MidnightFlyer Veteran Member

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    Reading Greenback's post here reminded me of the ill-fated Swansea Vale Railway that closed in 2007, I think as a result of vandalism (confirmation appreciated), and it made me wonder if any other preserved / heritage railways or railway centres from over the years have ever closed, been absorbed or similar, and the dates and reasons why. I know the work around Porthmadog has seen the the Ffestiniog and Welsh Highland railways merge, but I can't think of any more.

    Cheers
     
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  3. SussexSpotter

    SussexSpotter Member

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    Last edited: 14 Jul 2013
  4. jamieintercity

    jamieintercity Member

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    I'm not sure about this one but was the lochty private railway in Fife one? It was closed in 1992
     
  5. Wath Yard

    Wath Yard Member

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    A number of heritage sites have closed. Steamport, Southport is one. There are also 2 others I never knew existed until recently, having seen photos of them. One Dinting Railway Centre near Glossop and one near Grantham I think. There is also Carnforth of course.
     
  6. gazthomas

    gazthomas Established Member

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    Isle of Mull railway closed not too long ago.
     
  7. Prairie_5542

    Prairie_5542 Member

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    What about Buxton steam centre which was part of Peak Rail, which was closed?
    --- old post above --- --- new post below ---
    Barry Steam Railway? Now operated by Cambrian Railways.
     
  8. GM078

    GM078 Member

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    The Shane's Castle Railway in Northern Ireland closed circa 1995 I think. Much of the stock is now at the Giant's Causeway line, with a diesel at Stradbally also.

    The Foyle Valley Railway in Derry also spring to mind.
     
  9. bishdunster

    bishdunster Member

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    Not standard guage i know,and a fair while ago, but, the Creekmoor Light Railway (2ft Guage) on the outskirts of Poole Dorset, 1968-72 (see Wiki article), moved lock stock and barrel to form the Crockway Light railway near Maiden Newton Dorset 1972-79. Anyone who was connected with either of these i would love to hear from, as i was involved in both of these way back then ! :)
     
  10. Greenback

    Greenback Emeritus Moderator

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    While the amount of unsuccessful ventures is disappointing to any enthusiast, I think its important to realise that not every line can, or should be preserved/reopened.

    Locally to me, I hope that the Llanelli & Mynydd Mawr railway (http://lmmrcoltd.com/index.html) will prosper, but I do have my doubts that it will be sustainable in the longer term.
     
  11. Ploughman

    Ploughman Established Member

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    Technically Steamport Southport moved site.
    They had an offer for the site at Southport that could not be refused and a suitable alternative site was available at Preston. So the Ribble Steam Railway was born.

    Carnforth still exists just not open anymore.

    One that did close was the Lytham Creek museum from near Blackpool.
     
  12. steamybrian

    steamybrian Established Member

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    North Downs Steam Railway in Dartford, Kent closed in 1995 because the landowner (Dartford Council) wanted the land for redevelopment. The railway society and its assets were transferred to the Spa Valley Railway.
    Ashford Steam Centre closed in the 1970s because of financial difficulties and the land owner (BR) took back full ownership. All the rolling stock has been dispersed to other railways.
    North Woolwich Railway Museum (in East London) closed only a few years ago
     
  13. PaxVobiscum

    PaxVobiscum Established Member

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  14. D107

    D107 Member

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    Caerphilly Railway Society closed due to vandalism, but relocated to the Gwili as did the Vale of Neath Railway Society. The Butetown Historic Railway Society (in Cardiff) became the Vale of Glamorgan Railway Company and relocated to Barry Island (due to compulsory purchase of the Cardiff Docks site).

    The Vale of Glamorgan Railway were evicted after a number years by the council following a tendering process for a new operator and too is no more. :(
     
    Last edited: 12 Jan 2013
  15. RPM

    RPM Established Member

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    An obscure one that springs to mind is the Dowty Railway Preservation Society that was formerly at Ashchurch. They had a standard gauge collection and a narrow gauge line. The site closed down sometime in the 1980s and the society moved to Toddington on the Gloucestershire Warwicksgire Railway.
     
  16. D107

    D107 Member

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    Bulmers Railway Centre at Hereford was another. It was sited alongside the Bulmers Cider sidings.
     
  17. theblackwatch

    theblackwatch Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    There was also the Great Yorkshire Railway Preservation Society based at Starbeck. It relocated to Yorkshire Museum of Farming at Murton in 1990 and now operates over part of the former Derwent Valley Light Railway. This line actually ran as a steam railway between 1977 and 1979 but was not actually a preserved railway at the time (see the 'final years' section at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Derwent_Valley_Light_Railway for more information).
     
  18. Kali

    Kali Member

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    The Somerset & Dorset trust did actually run trains along a bit of the S&D from Radstock for a while. I was never quite sure about why they had to leave.
     
  19. yorksrob

    yorksrob Veteran Member

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    Not exactly a "heritage" railway (but it was a tourist attraction and it ran along a former mainline) there used to be narrow gauge railway along the old Ramsgate harbour tunnel, but I believe it closed in the sixties some time.
     
  20. MP33

    MP33 Member

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    A former colleague in the mid 1980's, who was very much involved with model railways stated that there were few total failures.

    He said there was one in Kent, where according to him the owner did not listen to any good advice offered.

    I have no idea myself as to where this was. I did read that in the early 1980's the Romney Hythe and Dymchurch threatened to dismantle everthing and move to an area with a greater tourist potential.
     
  21. 507 001

    507 001 Established Member

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    Say Whut?

    I think you'll find that they have always been one company ;)

    Well since 1933 anyway! :lol:

    http://www.festipedia.org.uk/wiki/Welsh_Highland
     
  22. steamybrian

    steamybrian Established Member

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    I believe you mean Mr. Lewis-Evans who ran Ashford Steam Centre.
    I diplomatically stated in an earlier posting it closed due to "financial problems" although those few words cover a very large story.
     
  23. Robert Taggart

    Robert Taggart Member

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    All the railways named above ring a bell.
    Methinks there be simply too many preserved railways in Blighty - perhaps austerity will weed-out the dross ?
    The only such with any future should be those with a decent length of line to run trains along - five miles minimum ? Also, those which encompass other railway or heritage attractions - the Keighley and Worth Valley Railway, the Nene Valley Railway, The West Somerset Railway...
    Alas, methinks the 'tiddlers' will be gobbled up - by the 'big fish' - eventually.
     
  24. D107

    D107 Member

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    Probably some element of truth in that but arguably a more important aspect is the requirement for "new" lines to have a unique selling point. The days of lines/railway centres simply offering a ride in a brakevan behind a wheezing Austerity won't bring the punters in, whereas a properly marketed attraction sufficient to draw in the paying public is a more viable option.

    "Attraction" and "unique selling point" are keywords here, in a climate where there are so many other, competing, options open to the public.
     
  25. JohnCarlson

    JohnCarlson Member

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    Is the Barry Island railway working now?
     
  26. fgwrich

    fgwrich Established Member

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    As were including some narrow gauge lines - Does anyone know what the set up at Hayle used to be about - up at the Riviere Towans?
     
  27. D107

    D107 Member

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    The Barry Island Railway closed following its eviction by the council, to be replaced by a commercial operation - The Barry Tourist Railway. Steam events run by the new operator seem to be using hired-in traction and diesel events relying on their 101 and 73. One of the running lines seems to be occupied by rakes of stored wagons at the moment.

    People living in Barry are asking the same questions as you John!
     
  28. CatfordCat

    CatfordCat Member

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    This was the NDSR's second site - they had previously operated within Chatham Dockyard.

    I'm not sure what the circumstances were that led to them moving away from Chatham.
     
  29. steamybrian

    steamybrian Established Member

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    Does the narrow gauge railway at Dobwalls Adventure Park in Cornwall count as a "Heritage Railway" when it closed approx. 5 years ago.
    --- old post above --- --- new post below ---
    Prior to moving to Chatham for a couple of years they also used the former goods yard at Higham station in which they laid some track to store their growing collection of stock.
     
  30. hinko

    hinko Member

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    peak rail is very much operational although at matlock end and as far as rowsley,and some day we hope to get to buxton as we still have the station to go into although on a smaller scale.hinko
     
  31. Smudger105e

    Smudger105e Established Member

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    I visited Transperience near Bradford, West Yorkshire some time ago, apparently it was built on the Low Moor Railway. it was open for 2 years and racked up a million pound debt in that time apparently

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transperience
     
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