A number of heritage railways are moving forwards on proposals to extend their running lines. This page provides a summary of projects that are being developed or have been proposed. The projects are grouped into three categories.
If you have any news with regards to any heritage railway extensions or additional stations, please don’t hesitate to draw my attention to it using the comments form below.
Standard Gauge Railway Extensions
Aln Valley Railway (North East of England)
The Aln Valley Railway project is ultimately planning to reconnect Alnwick with Alnmouth using the former branchline. The A1 has severed the railway line near Alnwick so the project group are using a site near the A1 as their Alnwick terminus, extending towards Alnmouth. The initial phase will extend the railway line to Greenrigg Bridge with phase 2 extending the railway line to Alnmouth station.
Bodmin Railway (South West)
The Bodmin Railway could be extended towards Wadebridge and ultimately Padstow.
Cambrian Heritage Railway
The Cambrian Heritage Railway are planning to restore the railway line between Gobowen and Oswestry.
Churnet Valley Railway (West Midlands)
There are a number of proposed extensions to the Churnet Valley Railway. A short extension north towards Leek is proposed. In addition, proposals exist to extend the line towards Stoke on Trent and Alton Towers.
Embsay and Bolton Abbey Steam Railway (Yorkshire)
There is a proposal to restore the junction with Rylstone railway line to enable trains to serve Skipton.
East Lancashire Railway (North West)
The railway are looking to extend their railway 1.5 miles eastwards towards Castleton. One of the options will see the railway run into a platform alongside the existing railway station.
Another option that has been put forward is the operation of regular trains on the line to Manchester connecting Rossendale to Manchester.
Hazelwood railway station on this railway line has not yet been restored.
Epping and Ongar Railway (South East)
There is an appetite to extend the railway towards Epping so that there is a better connection with the Central line.
Fleetwood (PWRS) (North West)
As well as proposals to introduce heavy rail and light rail services, a group is currently restoring the railway line between Fleetwood and Poulton ahead of an agreement with Network Rail to operate heritage trains on the line.
Great Central Railway (Bridge the Gap)
This major project connects two heritage railways to create one of the longest heritage railways in the UK by restoring a bridge across the Midland Mainline.
Gwili Steam Railway
Following completion of the southern extension to Abergwili Junction in 2017, the next extension is expected to be northwards towards Llanpumsaint.
The Helston Railway is planning an extension towards Helston.
Lincolnshire Wolds Railway
This railway is working on an extension towards Louth.
Somerset and Dorset Railway at Midsomer Norton
This railway is currently extending the railway southwards towards an infilled cutting at Chilcompton.
Mid Norfolk Railway (extension to County School)
Mid Norfolk Railway are working on extending their line towards County School.
Norfolk Orbital Railway
This proposal would see the Mid Norfolk Railway connected to the North Norfolk Railway via Fakenham.
North Yorkshire Moors Railway (Yorkshire)
A six mile gap remains between Malton and Pickering. This proposal is highly unlikely following construction on the trackbed south of Pickering.
Peak Rail (East Midlands)
A potential option for an extension is to extend the line towards Bakewell.
Rother Valley Railway
This railway is progressing proposals to extend the line to Robertsbridge.
Extending the railway to Grantown-on-Spey.
Swindon and Cricklade Railway
The Swindon and Cricklade Railway is working on an extension towards Cricklade.
Telford Steam Railway
The Telford Steam Railway are considering an extension of the line towards Ironbridge following the closure of the Power Station there.
Wensleydale Railway (Yorkshire)
It is proposed that this railway should eventually be extended from Redmire to Hawes and eventually Garsdale.
West Somerset Railway (South West)
Operate regular services on the national rail connection to Taunton
Narrow Gauge Railway Extensions
Apedale Valley Light Railway
The Moseley Railway Trust are working on a major project to create an industrial narrow gauge railway line and museum.
Bala Lake Railway (North Wales)
This proposal will extend the 4.5 mile narrow gauge Bala Lake Railway from Pen-y-Bont station 1,200 metres into the centre of Bala. The railway will use the existing road bridge creating a tramway before running into Bala.
The Corris Railway is actively seeking to extend southwards towards Machynlleth. The first star will see the line extended to a run round loop at Goedwig South
The existing railway has received planning permission to extend the line from Killington Lane to Wistlandpound Reservoir. Ultimately, the railway is aiming to extend towards Lynton.
South Tynedale Railway
The South Tynedale Railway opened its most recent extension to Slaggyford in 2018. The ultimate aim of this railway is to reconnect with the National Rail network at Haltwhistle. The largest barrier to this aspiration is crossing the A69
West Highland Railway
Bangor to Caernarfon has been proposed in the past. However, the railway advised in 2014 that it had no interest in extending the railway to Bangor.