Towards Double Arches!

THE award-winning Leighton Buzzard Railway is marking its 50th anniversary year with a £150,000 appeal to rebuild more of its ‘main line’.

The 2ft gauge line in Bedfordshire was built to serve several sand quarries and to take the extracted material to a transhipment siding of the main line near the town’s LNWR station.

Leighton Buzzard Railway 778 and “Pedemoura” haul a record seven-coach train alongside Vandyke Road, with a Paddington Bear special. 2/7/2017.

There was never a defined point to mark the eastern end of the line – the end of the main running line has always been recognised as being at the point at which it crossed Eastern Way and entered the main quarry itself at a location known locally as Double Arches.

Continuing modern-day sand extraction at the quarries there means that Double Arches is not yet accessible.

However, the opportunity now exists to extend the line beyond Stonehenge by nearly three-quarters of a mile, past Mundays Hill, to within striking distance of that eventual goal.

The heritage line has now launched a £150,000 appeal to cover the estimated costs of this extension and associated works at Stonehenge.

Work is well advanced to secure grant support, but that is likely to require matched funding from the line’s own resources.

Read more in Issue 231 of HR – on sale now!

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