TRAIN services will soon return to Broadway for the first time in more than 50 years after volunteers laid the last tracks at the village’s new railway station.
Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway’s ‘Broadway: The Last Mile’ project recently reached its final destination, after the last steel rails were laid to connect Broadway station with Cheltenham Racecourse, 15 miles to the south.
The first train, comprising the Permanent Way Department’s ballast and engineering wagons, was carefully propelled into the platforms, alongside the brand new station building.
It was the first train to stop at Broadway since British Railways closed the station in March 1960, before the station itself was demolished in November 1963.
The £1.3million raised to complete the works was thanks to the success of the railway’s ‘Broadway: The Last Mile’ share offer, launched by the railway’s president, Pete Waterman in 2016.
The funds enabled materials including brand new rail to be purchased and from the railhead at Laverton, the project has involved refurbishing five bridges, repairing culverts, putting in new drainage and remedying slipped earthworks in some places.
Chris Bristow, the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway’s volunteer finance director, said: “What an achievement for the more than 900 volunteers who have helped and for all those who had the vision to recreate this railway back in 1983.
“It’s such an important milestone and I’m deeply grateful to the many hundreds of people who have invested sums large and small.”
The station will officially open to the public on Friday, March 30.
Visit www.gwsr.com for more information about the project.