Enthusiasts sought for ‘work and play’ trip to aid iconic line restoration

By Geoff Courtney

ENTHUSIASTS who do not mind mixing hard graft with the joys of their hobby are being invited to join a UK-led working party that has set its sights on completing a restoration project that will return steam trains to a station in central Romania that closed two decades ago.

The train now arriving: No. 764-243, a 1911-built 0-8-0T, approaches Cornatel on the former 2ft 6in gauge Sibiu-Agnita line in central Romania at a gala held in September 2015 to mark the first stage of the line’s restoration which has been aided by a UK supporters’ group. The locomotive will be appearing at another gala on September 16/17 to celebrate the restoration of a further three miles, to the station of Hosman. RADU TOMPA

The station at Hosman was on a 38-mile 2ft 6in gauge railway between Sibiu and Agnita that opened in 1910 and closed in 2001.

In 2011, British enthusiasts formed the Sibiu to Agnita Railway UK Supporters’ Group (SARUK) with the long-term aim of restoring the entire iconic line, and to date they, working closely with local preservationists, have reopened a two-mile stretch midway on the route at Cornatel.

This reopening was celebrated with a steam gala in September 2015, and now a further three miles beyond to Hosman is on the cusp of seeing steam return.

It is hoped this will be achieved at a steam gala on September 16/17, and the supporters’ group and locals have drawn up a last-minute list of work in a bid to ensure this hope becomes reality.

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