During the year, generally between Good Friday and the end of October, the Corris Railway runs scheduled passenger services on selected Saturdays, Sundays and Bank Holidays through the summer and including a selection of weekday running too (Please view the timetable on the Timetable & Special Events page). This has been more limited during and post the Covid periods.
All services are being operated by volunteer members of the Society, who have undergone in-house training and have passed a test on the railway’s rulebook. More volunteers to join our operating staff and train for roles as driver, guard, blockperson, controller, ticket-seller etc. are always welcome, and we hope to be able to operate more midweek services in future once sufficient trained staff are available. If you are interested in volunteering initial contact can be made via firstname.lastname@example.org
Initial passenger services in 2002 were run by a train consisting of diesel Loco No.6, carriage 20 “Tiger” (constructed on a former Coal Board four-wheel manrider chassis, and funded by a member in memory of his late wife) and van 204 (adapted from a former Royal Navy vehicle). In June 2003 bogie carriage 21 (based on the vehicles that served the line from 1888 to 1930 but built to 21st century safety standards) was brought into service. Constructed by Society members in the East Midlands, it includes provision for carrying wheelchairs. A further bogie carriage, with clerestory roof, number 22 entered traffic in late 2017, once again built by volunteers The elliptically roofed 23 joined them in 2019 and by 2022 number 24 was well advanced. This will have a clerestory roof but will also offer 1st class travel once it enters service. 22 and 23 are able to carry wheelchairs and 24 will too.
As well as a range of goods vehicles sourced from all over the country and re-gauged to suit, Society members have restored original waggons from the railway or quarries, and these are used for demonstration freight trains, including one each month worked by gravity and photo charter work
Construction of a new steam loco, “Tattoo” class No.7, was completed and the locomotive delivered on May 17th 2005. After running trials and tests the locomotive came into service to pull its first passenger train on 20th August 2005 – 57 years to the day since the last steam hauled (goods) service. A further steam engine number 10, a 21st century recreation of one of the original “Falcon” locomotives is under way at the works of Alan Keef Ltd as fund raising progresses.
Permission has been received from the landowners to clear undergrowth on the trackbed south of the existing railhead to the planned new southern terminus at Tan-y-Coed, although it will not be possible to commence track-laying on this section until a Transport & Works Order has been obtained. Work on the Order and the many other provisions required is continuing steadily. Work on construction of an embankment, necessary to replace a section of the original line lost to road improvements, has taken place in the drier parts of 2020 and 2021 and as funding permits.
Until 2022 trains were operating push-pull between Corris and Maespoeth, due to a lack of run-round loop at Corris station. In the early months of that year work took place to provide a loop at Corris as part of an overall scheme to recreate some of the appearance and atmosphere of the overall roofed original which was demolished in 1968. As the whole of the former station site is not available to us the run round at Corris incorporates a traverser, built by Statfold Engineering, to move the locomotive from one line to another. This is a rare feature on a railway line in Britain. Work at the station has to be carried out when trains are not operating and when there are enough funds to allow it to proceed.
The Society is wholly reliant on volunteers for virtually all aspects of its work.