Our Board

The Wensleydale Railway is one of the only Heritage railways in the country to be still considered as part of the national network, this is to facilitate the use by the MOD for trains to and from the railhead at Redmire. As such the railway is required to operate as a commercial concern, and so we need to be a PLC to run services. The board of the PLC take full responsibility for the safe operation of the railway, but are all volunteers and do not receive any remuneration for the work provided, they do it for the love of the line and the desire to see the Railway grow and prosper.

Guy Loveridge – Chairman

Guy has been in the chair since April 2019. He has a strong and active back ground in the heritage sector, and lists “trains and boats and ‘planes” amongst his passions. A former professional racing driver and an international Award winning Author he doubles up as a Conductor on the Wensleydale’s own Polar Express. Guy is married with three sons, one of whom also take a part in Polar, and lives in West Yorkshire. 

Carl Les

Apart from education, Carl has lived in the Leeming Bar area all his life, born into the family`s roadside café business in Leeming village. Attending the Scottish Hotel School, part of the University of Strathclyde, Carl graduated with an Honours degree in hotel management and marketing, and after working for the Forte family in their THF business, Carl joined the family business (relocated in 1961 onto the A1  bypass at Leeming Bar)  in 1974 following the ill health of his father.

“I spent the next 40 years building the reputation of the restaurant locally, and the rest of Leeming Bar Services, hotel, café, Yorkshire Maid retail shop, petrol station, into an iconic location on the Great North Road. Not as strategic as Scotch Corner, but we were well known nationally. In 2014, against great opposition from The Highways Agency, I won planning consent to develop a full Motorway Service Area at Leeming Bar. Faced with a minimum £20m investment requirement, I was content to pass that challenge on to others and retire.”

However, retirement hasn`t been quiet for Carl. Falling into local politics almost by chance, Carl was elected to represent Bedale for the district council in 1995. 2 years later he won Catterick on the County Council, a seat he has held with some boundary changes ever since. He has served on the Executive of NYCC since 2000, and became Leader 5 years ago. He sits on the boards of Welcome to Yorkshire, and the Local Enterprise Partnership, and is the finance lead member at present for all the County Councils in the country. Locally he chairs the Police & Crime Panel, North Yorkshire Youth and the local Citizens Advice, and is always keen to get involved in community and voluntary activities like the Wensleydale Railway.

Richard Holt – Commercial

Richard joined the railway way back in 1996 when he picked up a leaflet sharing the vision of reopening the railway whilst enjoying a pint in the Wensleydale Heifer in West Witton. Whilst an ‘armchair supporter’ for many years he started volunteering in 2010 as part of a charitable support scheme for his employer at the time. This progressed and since joining Richard has become a lead organiser in the annual WensleyAle Festival and Polar Express. By day, Richard works for Northern Railway helping their trains run on time.

Alex Dudiak – IT/Digital

A life long railway enthusiast, Alex is taking responsibility for the railways IT systems and web/social media presence. When not volunteering for the railway Alex is a systems integrator, designing and implementing data management solutions for industrial processes around the world. 

Steve Davies

A former Army officer (Colonel) whose penultimate Army appointment was as an advisor to The President and Government of Sierra Leone in re-establishing his Country’s Ministry of Defence in the wake of the rebel war, Steve’s final military appointment was Chief of Staff of a Division (circa 20,000 Regular and Reserve troops), based in Edinburgh, with responsibility for coordinating Army training and operational support across 40% of the UK mainland.  Steve retired from the Army in 2008 to become Director of the Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester.  Subsequently he became Director of the National Railway Museum in York.  In the latter appointment he successfully negotiated the repatriation of two A4 Class Pacific steam locomotives from North America resulting in a series of internationally-renowned exhibitions and events attracting over 500,000 people and generating a profit of £0.5 million for the NRM.  Three years were then spent as Managing Director of Surf Snowdonia, delivering, from initial idea to successful completion and operation, a £17 million ‘Wavegarden’ artificial inland surfing facility in North Wales.  Steve is now the Managing Director of his own company, The International Railway Heritage Consultancy Ltd.  He is also Chairman of the A1 Steam Locomotive Trust, President of the Friends of the Sierra Leone National Railway Museum, and a Trustee of the Army Museums Ogilby Trust.

Janet Crampton

Though Janet’s interest in Wensleydale Railway started in 2003 when she initiated the village volunteers’ restoration of Scruton Station, Janet became a Board member soon after, and is now in her second term serving as a Director of the plc. Janet’s background is actually in health and social care, having been the commissioning lead of Central Government’s Older People & Dementia Change Agent team, and offers – as well as people and communication skills – service improvement and transformational change experience to Wensleydale Railway.

Clifford Almond 

Having come from an architectural, engineering and building services background with many years’ experience as a senior Project Manager; Cliff Almond is a Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute, and an accredited PRINCE2 & NEC ECC Project Management Practitioner; with experience in both international and UK construction projects.  He has also served as a Non-executive Director.

Having set up his own Management Consultancy 3 years ago; Cliff now specialises in capital healthcare projects; specifically providing project management and interim management solutions to the healthcare sector.

In his spare time, Cliff designs and builds live steam locomotives; with a particular emphasis on 7, ¼ narrow gauge locomotives.  Allied to this; he is Honorary Secretary to the Nottingham Society of Model and Experimental Engineers; as is the founding member of the East Somerset Society of Model and Experimental Engineers.

Russell Lord

Russell joined in May 1983 the then British Rail Treasures Department in London working on the foreign bank accounts and dealing with external funding via the city traders.
However being a qualified engineer he moved into the Mechanical & Electrical Engineers department, during his time there he was responsible the design implementation of various databases to record OHL Component failures also accountable for various unique designs of equipment for the Electrification system.
He was involved in the Electrification of the East Coast Main Line and was the Electrification Construction Engineer responsible for the completion of the final stage between Northallerton & Chathill.
He was the Project Manager for the redesign of the Electrification and Permanent Way of Polmadie depot at Glasgow to except the Eurostar Trains, and various other major schemes.
Since moving into Operations in 1999, he monitors the Infrastructure to ensure the safety & integrity by various means, he identifies Infrastructure Failures and establish and relate to contractors staff priorities for their attention so to minimise detrimental impact for our stakeholders.

Terry Larder – Health and Safety 

Terry spent 41 years in the Steel Industry (Rail Traffic), roles included Shunter/Driver/Foreman/Section Manager/Department Manager/Rail Traffic Manager . Responsibilities included all department Health and Safety procedures /Rail operations/track management (contract owner) / mobile crane contract owner / Road and rail weighbridges /Rolling stock fleet budget owner . Role at the WR director Health and Safety 

Want to help out ?

We are always looking for new friends to help the railway move forward. If you are interested please contact us