More Vandalism at GCRN

It seems vandals have struck again at our heritage railway centre. Nottinghamshire Police are reporting that, over the past few nights, a total of six windows over a number of carriages have been broken at Ruddington’s Great Central Railway – Nottingham. The latest, mindless attack comes as railway volunteers are still trying to raise funds to fix the estimated £80,000 of damage caused there by vandalism just over three months ago. On that occasion two boys were arrested in connection with the incident. It also resulted in the setting up of a dedicated fundraising…

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Bombs to Butterflies Revisited

Older Ruddingtonians will remember the days before Rushcliffe Country Park – when this sizeable area of the village was used as an Ordnance Storage and Disposal Depot. Our senior citizens will perhaps have even earlier memories – when it housed a bomb-filling factory during the Second World War. In 2003, a book called ‘Bombs to Butterflies’ was published by The Ruddington History Society and The Friends of Rushcliffe Country Park. It was edited by Margaret Lawson and told the history of the area from wartime up to when it became a…

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Arrests Made After Railway Vandalism

Nottinghamshire Police say they have arrested two boys in connection with the criminal damage at Ruddington’s Great Central Railway site on Monday (29th April). Volunteers at our village heritage centre have estimated that the attack – reportedly involving around half a dozen young people who smashed a total of 112 windows on various items of coaching stock and two diesel railcars – will cost around £80,000 to repair. They were then disturbed by a volunteer and are believed to have fled on bikes toward Rushcliffe Country Park. It has prompted dismay and…

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Vandals Cause £80,000 Damage to Heritage Railway

Ruddington’s Great Central Railway (Nottingham) is appealing for your help to catch those responsible for a relentless campaign of thefts and mindless acts of vandalism at the much loved, village tourist attraction. Director Phil Stanway reveals that, over the past six to eight weeks, their site has been subjected to an ongoing and concerted spate of theft and vandalism attacks – involving multiple break ins to vehicles and buildings and deliberate damage on a large scale. All along the railway, which operates 10 miles from the base at Ruddington, through East Leake to…

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Heritage Railway Fundraising Milestones Reached

It’s just over a year since we reported an historic moment for The Great Central Railway – when a new bridge rejoining two sections of the line divided for almost half a century was lowered into place. This structure (right) bridges the gap over the Midland Mainline. However, in order for trains to begin running all the way from Ruddington to Birstall again, there is still much work to be done. That includes repairing the existing canal bridge at Loughborough (GCR’s top photo) for which a fundraising milestone has just…

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Fire Halts Weekend Steam Trains

Steam hauled services along the Great Central Railway from Ruddington have again been withdrawn after the embankment fire at East Leake on Sunday. The blaze came only a week after GCRN’s resident steam loco was reinstated on the heritage line between our village and Loughborough. Planned trips using Hunslet 2890 had been suspended since early July due to concerns about the risk of trackside fires during the long, dry heatwave. But after the recent wet and cooler weather, it was thought they could safely be reintroduced. These photos taken soon afterwards by…

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Trains Cancelled and Sky Lanterns & BBQs Banned

Whilst many are enjoying the extended heatwave and glorious sunshine, unfortunately the hot and dry weather has had a negative impact on one of Ruddington’s key tourist attractions. After safety concerns, Great Central Railway (Nottingham) has cancelled all its planned steam services this Sunday (8th July). After initial worries about trackside fires being caused by sparks from the funnel of the historic Hunslet 2890 ‘Douglas’ loco, which was due to operate today, the reason given was “…issues affecting the rail caused by the current heatwave.”  GCRN’s statement adds: “A further inspection will take place…

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The Screaming Valenta Needs a Roof!

A charity is aiming to raise £100,000 to build a new diesel maintenance depot to house the prototype High Speed Train Power Car 41001 and six Mk3 coaches. The 125 Group needs donations to achieve its long-term goal to construct the building at Ruddington’s Great Central Railway (Nottingham). The depot will provide a secure, all weather, facility to enable the 125 Group to continue maintenance of its existing fleet and a restoration home for the Production HST power cars which the charity aims to acquire in the future. The 125…

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Loan Loco Saves “Santa Specials”

Youngsters can breathe a sigh of relief. Father Christmas WILL be able to spend some time in Ruddington in the run-up to the festive season after all! The popular Great Central Railway Nottingham (GCR{N}) “Santa Specials” – which are always hauled by heritage steam – were put in jeopardy at the start of this month. That’s because Stanier 8F-8274 – the only operational passenger steam locomotive based in Ruddington – suffered a serious failure. An inspection revealed the bad news of multiple cracks in the firebox and a very long and expensive journey to…

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Ruddington Railway Fundraiser gives £1.35K to Charity

A High Speed Train 40th anniversary event at Ruddington’s Great Central Railway has raised £1,350 for charity. Railway Children was presented with a cheque yesterday (Tuesday 6th December) by fundraisers from the 125 Group, the Great Central Railway (Nottingham) and East Midlands Trains. The cash was raised at a special event that took place at the Heritage Centre on the 19th of November where a visiting East Midlands Trains HST ran throughout the day to mark its 40th anniversary. It was the first time that this formation of train operated on this line and proved…

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