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The Mountsorrel Railway is part of the Mountsorrel and Rothley Community Heritage Centre. This website is no longer updated. For updates see:

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Online vote gives boost for Mountsorrel Railway

The Mountsorrel Railway Project is to receive a valuable cash boost after being successful in winning an online election arranged by NatWest CommunityForce.

Nationally over 5,800 community projects registered to take part and these were then voted for by the public, either online or by telephone, in an election that was sub-divided into regional competitions. Over 366,000 votes were cast nationally. To achieve success the Mountsorrel Railway had to compete with 45 other projects in the Burton/Loughborough area.

The prize for the railway is an award of £6,275 which is expected to be presented early in the new year. Project leader Steve Cramp was delighted with this news:
"Not only does this allow our track-laying to continue unhindered but it raises the profile of the project both locally and further afield. Like so many community projects, we often find it an uphill battle to gain publicity and this kind of recognition is invaluable for raising the public's awareness of us. What makes the award so special to us is that it was voted for by the public, it's good to know that so many share our vision of bringing what we hope will be a much valued educational and recreational resource to our community."
Not only did the project win the area vote, but also came within the top 1% of all projects nationally! Continued Steve:
"To have come so high in the voting at a national level is almost overwhelming. We don't have the marketing and PR might of some of the larger organisations we were up against, so to know we have such a high level of public support has really give our volunteers a boost."
The aim of the project is to relay just over a mile of railway from just south of Swithland Reservoir to Bond Lane, Mountsorrel. When completed the branch line would become an additional attraction for the Great Central Railway, which would operate trains from Rothley along the branch to Mountsorrel. The restored railway will also form a working linear museum allowing forgotten scenes from our industrial past to be recreated for today's generations to experience and learn from. So far over 500 metres of track has been re-laid. The grant from NatWest CommunityForce will now allow track-laying to progress rapidly towards Wood Lane, Mountsorrel.

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Phase 2 track laying underway

Community volunteers have started laying track along phase 2 of the Mountsorrel Railway trackbed. Phase 2 involves the laying of an additional 450 metres of track length and will extend the line to almost half a mile in length.

Progress has been rapid with up to 80m of track laid by hand in a single morning. The railway is being restored using the traditional skills of the original navvies who built the railway 115 years ago. Great care is being taken to use historically correct materials as well. 

Phase 2 will be constructed in two halves. The first half is almost complete and further materials will be sourced for the second half early in the new year.

History is made as first steam train runs on restored Mountsorrel Railway

On November 17th 2011 LMS "Jinty", BR no. 47406, became the first steam loco to run on the GCR branch of the Mountsorrel Railway in over 50 years!

The branch took part in a Russ Hillier private photo charter that involved the Jinty making several runs along the branch with a selection of wagons, including the Mountsorrel Granite Company wagons, which were restored by project volunteers last year.

We are pleased to say that the newly laid track performed well, much to the delight of the hordes of photographers that had gathered to capture this historic event. When complete the restored branch line will create many opportunities for historical recreations, allowing the story of our industrial past to be told for today's generations to experience and learn from.

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