National award for Leadhills railway’s commuter service

Leadhills and Wanlockhead Railway Station
Leadhills and Wanlockhead Railway Station

Leadhills and Wanlockhead Railway has won a national Heritage Railway Association award for its initiative providing public transport when the road between Leadhills and Wanlockhead closed last summer.

Commuters would have faced a 50-mile detour to get between the villages, but the narrow gauge volunteers stepped in while the B797 was closed for resurfacing.

They organised a rail service, timed to meet up with the bus from Lanark, but running almost hourly to help villagers, including those from Leadhills who work at the mining museum in Wanlockhead.

The rail service carried over 215 passengers during the week, and even honoured bus passes.

The award was announced at a dinner at the Wolverhampton Low Station conference centre.

David Winpenny, commercial manager for the Leadhills and Wanlockhead Railway, was delighted and proud that the group won the award - a solid brass plaque that will take pride of place at Leadhills station.

“It is a great achievement as we can all now say we volunteer at an ‘Award Winning’ railway,” he said.

“Thanks must go to all who helped to organise and run the week of the closure; without the drivers and guards and shop people we would not have been able to do it. Hopefully this will give us a boost and urge us to give even more for the new season that starts at Easter.”