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Exploring old railways …

Exploring old railways is a uniquely interesting hobby. It will take you to places that, usually, are off the beaten track; indeed, places which no longer have any tracks to them. It prompts questions. Who paid for, designed and built this railway line? Why does it take this particular route? Who and what did it transport? How many people did it employ? What were the trains like? Where did they go? Then there are the modern benefits, like finding a constructive new use for the billions of pounds’ worth of transport infrastructure which was thrown away during the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s, including bridges, tunnels, stations, goods sheds, engine sheds, signal boxes, cuttings, embankments and many now-listed viaducts. These routes get people out into the countryside, bringing new life and economic benefits to remote rural areas, with local shops, cafés, pubs, B&Bs, etc. enjoying increased trade. They are traffic-free, and encourage people to take exercise in safe, green places, which often have become wildlife corridors. They deserve a place in national plans to fight obesity and make us more active. They are great for families, where children can learn how to ride a bike in safety. They are great for cyclists and walkers, or those who use mobility scooters or wheelchairs, or those – perhaps elderly or recovering from surgery – who need an easier walk to help them get active again. Welcome to the fascinating world of railway rambling …

 

Full details can be found via the 'About Us' link, but briefly this is what we do:

  • Organise walks on former railway lines
  • Promote and campaign for rail trails
  • Record the history of lost lines
  • Establish links and relationships

Organisation

  • We are a national club run by a committee elected annually at our AGM
  • We appoint regional organisers to coordinate and promote local actities throughout the UK
  • We encourage members to get involved, e.g. by leading walks in their local area

Activities

  • Organise walks on disused railways throughout the UK
  • Respect private property at all times, including by not trespassing
  • Negotiate occasional walks over / visits to privately owned former railway sites
  • Promote the benefits of railway paths, e.g. health, wildlife corridors, green travel, etc.
  • Support path development

Publications

  • Quarterly magazine, featuring news, walk reports and the forthcoming walks programme
  • Annual walks supplement, published each autumn
  • Local walk programmes, usually circulated by email

Subscriptions

  • Great value subscription rates
  • Up to two 'taster walks' for non-members