A Ride on a Steam Train with Peak Rail
A different ‘Best Day Out in the Peak District’ for today: a plea for the future…
Peak Rail is a heritage steam and diesel railway line that runs for 4 miles between restored railway stations on the edge of the Peak District at Matlock and Rowsley South. It’s been operating for nearly 30 years, and it all began when a group of enthusiasts first started running preserved steam and diesel locomotives on a section of 19th Century heritage line. Largely staffed by volunteers, it’s always been a very popular Peak District day out, with a number of special events usually running every year, including the wonderful ‘Santa Special’ train rides for families at Christmas. Peak Rail also ran a restaurant service, The Palatine, on board two beautifully preserved railway carriages, where you could dine and watch the Peak District countryside drift past you.
The past year and a half have been the hardest in memory for Peak Rail.
In November 2019 came catastrophic floods in the region, which caused £100,000’s worth of damage to Bridge 35 over the River Derwent north of Matlock.
The timing of the imposed lockdown in March 2020 came at the worst possible time, just as their 2020/21 season was getting underway. Instead of starting to recoup the losses arising from the flooding, Peak Rail had to close its operation and were unable to secure any of their usual income from trains, special events, driving courses, dining experiences or shops. They estimate that around £200,000 was lost completely overnight due to the cancellation of their bookings.
We very much hope that Peak Rail can reopen again and continue to provide visitors and local people with more fantastic Peak District days out in the future on their beautifully-restored historic line. But they need your help.
To secure the future of the railway for generations to come Peak Rail trying to raise an initial £60,000 to complete repairs on their own 0-6-0 ST ‘Royal Pioneer’. This will enable them to be self-sufficient and start recovering losses through the use of this beautiful locomotive.
There are several ways you can help:
• By making a donation ONLINE
• By donating via BACS – Peak Rail plc main account – Sort Code 089075 – Account Number 70971237
• By donating via Cheque – Made payable to Peak Rail plc
• By becoming a Peak Rail Shareholder or joining their monthly Share Club (find out more here: www.peakrail.co.uk/support/shareholders/)
• By volunteering to help on the railway (find out more here: Peak Rail Association Webpage)
If you feel you can donate any amount, whether large or small, it would be greatly appreciated to help secure this wonderful part of Peak District history.
Find out more
To find out more about Peak Rail, click on the button below: