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ALL ABOARD: Full steam ahead as volunteers get back to the Ruislip Lido Railway

 Published on: 15th June 2021   |   By: Holly Bullen   |   Category: Uncategorized

Have you ever fancied taking a ride on Britain’s longest 12-inch narrow gauge railway? Well look no further than Ruislip Lido home to the Ruislip Lido Railway.

First opened in 1946 as a tourist attraction at the booming Lido the railway was even provided with its own station called Woody Bay.

This allowed passengers to board the train for a round trip of 1,000 yards along the edge of the reservoir and back.

Last year marked the 75th anniversary of the railway but due to COVID-19 restrictions the celebrations were limited.

This month however the team of volunteers at the railway will be hosting a gala to mark the occasion allowing visitors to find out more about the railway.

We caught up with one of the railway directors, Chris Ladyman ahead of the gala to find out how the past year has been.

Chris said over the past year like other railways across the country they have had to adapt to the changing restrictions.

He said: “Since the start of COVID we have been adapting and have been closed here and there, but we’ve done well.

“All railways have had to adapt with distancing, cleaning changing of cash handling, etc.”

Chris added that with the recent spate of hot weather the lido has been busier than ever bringing people to the railway.

He said: “The lido has remained popular when the sun is out. We don’t really try and advertise, we don’t have to as we are quite lucky.

“Within the local area, we are quite a popular day out and the café is also open now as well and operating safely.”

Chris also said that the volunteers are happy to be back on the railway and welcoming familiar faces again with two new coaches delivered in March.

He said: “We have been running trains at about 50 per cent capacity so the two new coaches have helped with that.

“We are grateful for the support from the local area, it’s been nice for volunteers to gave that escape in their life to spend time with friends and provide enjoyment to the public as well.”

Find out more at ruisliplidorailway.org/

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