The Auckland Project has launched a campaign to reinstate the western section of the historic Stockton to Darlington Railway, which will celebrate its 200th anniversary as the first passenger service in 2025.

The first phase of this ambitious project has been concluded with the purchase of the Weardale Railway, which stretches from Bishop Auckland westwards for nearly 20 miles into the heart of Weardale.

The heritage railway, built in 1847, has been bought out of administration, securing its future and unlocking the potential for growth within the region’s tourism economy, as well as reinstating this transport link to Weardale’s rural communities.

The Auckland Project's purpose as a regeneration charity is to create opportunities and drive investment into Bishop Auckland and the surrounding area. The purchase of Weardale Railway will be a further catalyst for change and consolidate the investment to date of £200m in the region.

To deliver a full service from Darlington westwards, it is their aim to secure a partnership with a Train Operating Company, as well as working with Durham County Council. They will continue to call on the essential expertise provided by the staff of the former Weardale Railway Community Interest Company and volunteers of the Weardale Railway Trust, who operated the summer heritage service on behalf of its previous US owner.

If you are a Visit Heritage member you can read more like this in our quarterly members' magazine "Time Traveller".

Find out more about membership here: Membership

Find out more about past Time Traveller Magazine here: Visit Heritage Shop


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