Mid Suffolk District Council Planning Committee have formally approved plans to extend the Mid Suffolk Light Railway by another 500 metres which will more than double its current length. This means the Middy will be able to give visitors vintage steam train rides of approximately 1 kilometre lasting about 10 minutes once the extension has been completed.
The new section follows the existing track bed and will enhance the visitor experience of this unique Edwardian Railway by doubling the length of demonstration journey and giving passengers a ‘destination’. The line will eventually terminate at Aspall Halt, the construction being modelled on the old station at Wilby, which had the minimal building and facilities so typical of the original cash-strapped Middy.
We had a great quantity of rail and sleepers and fittings stored in the Dovebrook copse overgrown with brambles and other vegetation. It was difficult to see what we had and the rail was still attached to chairs.
After we had cleared the vegetation and sorted through the enormous pile of rail, taking off chairs and stacking them ready for use we now know we have enough rail. We have also salvaged and/or bought some two thirds of the sleepers we need complete the line.
Great progress has been made in 2019, next is raising the funds to finish the job.
Sponsor a Sleeper
Help more than double the length of the Middy
The extension will require a budget of £125,000 at today’s prices and the Middy’s Sponsor a Sleeper Campaign is the first salvo in raising the funds. Donors are asked for £15.00 for each sleeper and in return they will receive a certificate confirming their contribution.
This campaign has been very well received by members and, of course, it is open to the general public. Work on the first phase started in February and our contractors, TES 2000, have already prepared the trackbed and laid the ballast in readiness for track laying.
If you would like to help this great project to secure the Middy as a national railway attraction and a major Suffolk tourist attraction, please visit our sponsorship page.