The Churnet Valley Railway Has begun work to Reconnect Leek.
The first train has now left Cheddleton Passed Leekbrook Junction, which is the current end of the Churnet Valley Railway, heading towards Leek and travelled along the newest section of the track, being the first train to travel from Leekbrook towards leek for nearly 40 years
The Railway has laid the first 200 metres of track meaning that 1KM is left to travel into Leek.
The current extension of the line will be used just for special excursions to showcase the work going into the next phase.
The Line now extends as far as the water works in Leekbrook.
The Churnet Valley Railway shared this video of the track being laid
The railway hopes to have the the line to Leek completed within 24 months after SMDC leader Sybil Ralphs signed the Lease of the track bed into Leek over to the Churnet Valley Railway today ( Friday 11th October) and are currently working on gaining more funding to help build the line.
The Churnet Valley Railway is has also recently announced a fundraising programme to take place from Autumn 2019 onwards, with the first special event to be held on Saturday 26th October. The ‘Super Power Saturday’ is being run solely in aid of returning trains to Leek, with all ticket sales and donations on the day going to the ‘Reconnect Leek’ fund.
The ground-breaking, one-off event will showcase the unique spectacle of three working S160 steam engines, demonstrating their American muscle as they weave through the Churnet Valley and up the steep gradients to Ipstones. Special guest loco USATC S160 no. 2253 Omaha will be making its first ever visit to Staffordshire, courtesy of Peter Best and Dartmouth Steam Railway. The locomotive will be joining resident S160s nos 5197 and 6046, with the former best known for her recent appearance on UKTV’s Train Truckers. The three S160 locos will appear together at the Churnet Valley Railway – a first for the UK and only the second time within preservation globally.
Further fundraising activity will be announced in due course, including special events, a share issue, and community outreach.