Wensleydale Railway Association (Trust) Ltd

The Wensleydale Railway Association (Trust) Ltd is a Registered Charity (Reg. No. 1088324) and a Company Limited by Guarantee (Co. No. 4094801). It is a member organisation that supports the Wensleydale Railway PLC. The organisation, generally known  as ‘The Trust’, was created in 2015 by the merger of the Wensleydale Railway Association (WRA) and the Wensleydale Railway Trust (WRT), the former being set up as a member organisation in 1990 to promote the reopening of the railway, which had not  provided regular passenger services since 1954. The WRT was established as  a charity in 2000 with the following ‘charitable objects’ which were inherited by WRA(T) at the merger:

(i) To advance the education of the public in all matters related to the Wensleydale Railway between Northallerton in the County of North Yorkshire and Garsdale in the County of Cumbria (hereinafter called “the Railway”) and railways and public transport in general and integrated transport in particular.

(ii) To advance and conserve the heritage of the Railway, and railways in general, for the benefit of the public.

Members of the WRA and the WRT established the PLC in 2004 to create the operating company for the line and to enter into a long-term lease with Network Rail. Passenger trains ran again in July 2003.

WRA(T) supports the PLC:
 by a combination of awarding grants for tasks and activities that are compatible with these object(ive)s, such as track repairs;
 by funding and undertaking its own conservation and restoration projects (such as the refurbishment of Station House at Leeming Bar, assisted by a substantial grant from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, NLHF);
 by employing staff to run a Heritage Education programme with local schools and promote community engagement with local people up and down the line;
 by facilitating the provision and training of volunteers (currently over 425) to assist with a wide range of tasks required for the railway to run.


Other major projects over the years have included the restoration of the signal box at Leeming Bar, the restoration of Scruton Station, the construction of a passing loop and other facilities at Leyburn Station, and the refurbishment of various items of rolling stock.
The Trust publishes a magazine called ‘Relay’ four times a year, which is issued to all members, currently numbering approximately 1,500. It also fundraises through a combination of appeals to members and the general public and by seeking grants from  funding bodies such as NLHF.
The Trust is run by a Council of Management, of at least six Trustees (there are currently nine) who meet monthly to manage the affairs of the business.


Would you like to join our team?

New trustees are always welcome. If you are interested in supporting the railway’s development, please contact us at admin@wensleydalerailway.com