Your browser is no longer supported. Please upgrade your browser to improve your experience.

Ben’s Blog – June 2021

14 June 2021 | News

Our latest update from Ben Harding, our Operations Manager, shining a spotlight on whats been happening at the railway over the past few months.


It only feels like yesterday since I last wrote a blog post for the website, but actually was October 2020 since my last one! Since then, so much has happened, it will be difficult to summarise it all in a few paragraphs!

Work on the new building (the Engine Shed, which will be home to indoor soft play, cafe, toilets, party rooms and offices) has progressed at a significant pace, so much so that the building is now very much in the fitting out stage with lots of different trades working hard, making this great dream become a reality. Since my last update, the steel frame was erected, the building has been cladded, roofed, the concrete floor has been poured, half of the finished floor screed has been poured, the mechanical and electrical team have moved in and are starting to run cables, the carpentry team have been busy erecting stud work and fitting the decking stretchers and so much more! I was pleased to be able to make a number of short videos documenting the construction work and these can be found via youtube by clicking here.

Elsewhere on the site, the 7.25″ gauge woodland railway was completely re-tracked in the early part of 2021 with new sleepers, rail, ballast and fixings offering a much more smoother and comfortable ride. Various works have taken place on the locomotives and  coaches on all three railways and this is outlined below.


Ellie has, as ever performed well over the winter period. Operating all of the Santa at Lappa Valley services, she was winterised shortly after the christmas event and given her annual inspection in March and returned to service when we reopened in April.



Ruby was winterised after the November services last year and has since had her annual exam in March and received some work on the bottom end with the replacement of the suspension rubbers and other routine maintenance.  Ruby is in service for the 2021 season and is sharing the workload with Ellie, Muffin and City of Derby.



Zebedee is currently patiently waiting for her overhaul to commence. We hope to have Zebedee return to steam at some point during 2022.



Muffin has performed well for the first part of the 2021 season however has since been stopped for work to take place on the bottom end. Muffin is currently away at our engineers having new driving wheels, re-pinned motion work and new horn guides machined for the axle boxes.



Arthur is nearing the end of its mid-term overhaul. Troy has been busy in the shed working hard on re assembling the loco following its full gearbox rebuild. Arthur will receive a coat of paint and a few other minor tweaks before hopefully returning to service in July.



City of Derby has proved to become a very reliable locomotive in the stable, being used primarily for the operation of the second train and any shunting. The loco has been extremely reliable since its overhaul and will continue to share the work of operating the trains with its steam counterparts!



The Newlyn Downs continues to be a popular, busy attraction. Over the winter months, Eric was stopped for a mid term overhaul and full repaint and has since returned to service when we reopened in April and has operated faultlessly since.



VICTORIA – Unfortunately Victoria is currently stopped for work on the generator unit. We hope to return Victoria to service in time for the summer holidays.

The APT is performing well following its overhaul this winter which included the installation of a new engine, hydraulic pump, full re-wire, bodywork repairs and full repaint into a new attractive livery, now bearing a much closer resemblance to its full size counterparts.

The HST has had minor work over the winter months and is used in rotation with the APT and Victoria.



We are pleased to offer our dual gauge 5″ & 3.5″ gauge portable track for sale.

All mounted in a trailer quite happily towed by a family car, it includes;

  • 100 metres of raised track and all fixings and supports
  • 2 riding trolleys
  • 1 battery electric shunter locomotive
  • Various wooden packers
  • Orange net fencing and supports
  • 2 timber ‘platform’ sections

The asking price for is £2800.00 ONO.


Sign up to Stea-mail!

We’d love to keep in touch with you about our news, events and special offers. If you’re interested in hearing from us on email, please sign up to receive our newsletter below. We promise you will only receive information from Lappa Valley and we will only send you an email occasionally.