Watercress Line

Coronavirus / Covid-19 Update

Our priority during the Coronavirus / Covid-19 outbreak, and the railway's closure, is on meeting our running costs. We need around £75,000 per month. Without this income, within a relatively short period we will exhaust our reserves which are so important us for our long term plans.

Although these are difficult times for all of us, we are asking you to consider providing financial support to the railway. With your support, ideally through a monthly standing order, the railway can be in a safe and good position to move forward rapidly when circumstances allow.

The amount is up to you as everyone’s circumstances are different, but please give as generously as you can. One-off donations would also be welcomed.

Thank you.

Visit our donation page to make a monthly gift or donate a single amount.

You can also text WATERCRESS to 70085 to donate £10. Texts cost £10 plus one standard rate message.

Miniature Railway Winter Activities

This is a précis of the works have been undertaken through the winter: 


  • Changed the Engine Oil, Air and Oil Filters. 
  • Greased all the bearings. One grease nipple had a damaged thread and was replaced. 
  • Replaced the “spider” resilient coupling between the Engine and Generator. This coupling will be added to the list of annual items for replacement as it was showing signs of significant wear. 
  • Cleaned Generator and Traction Motor commutators. Noted that Traction Motor brushes will need changing soon and replacements have been procured. 



  • Changed the Engine Oil and cleaned the air filter which remarkably required little cleaning. 
  • Changed the Transmission Oil in the Eaton Hydrostatic Pump. No easy task as it requires complete removal of the unit as it cannot be drained in situ. 
  • The Battery Isolating Switch required cleaning once again. This item has proved troublesome on a couple of occasions and a replacement has now been sourced and will be fitted soon. 



  • Courtesy of finance by the Preservation Society (many thanks!) we have acquired two 3 car articulated sets of coaches from the Ferry Meadows Railway. Thanks are also due to Bernie Dench for arranging the move and for Arlington Services for undertaking it. These coaches are slightly too wide for our railway and in quite poor condition. The moulded seats have been discarded and the 3 best frames selected for rebuilding. All the frames were different widths across their box section frameworks with one end car being 34” wide, centre car 32” and second end car 30”. We decided to standardise on a width of 32”. The centre car frame is underway at our container whilst the more significant rebuilding work on the two end cars is very kindly being undertaken by David Ford and several members of the Loco Wednesday gang. We are very grateful to them for their efforts and the high standard of workmanship on these. Procurement of flooring and seating materials and their assembly will follow shortly. Once complete these will replace the ones we currently have on loan. Refurbishment of the bogies is also underway. 



  • Work has already commenced on providing much needed power to our container. The work under Blakes Crossing has already been done and we are very grateful to Bernie Dench and his team for undertaking this. The trench work to lay the tubing & cable up to our container is due to start Mon 11th April. 
  • We have repaired leaks to the front of the container roof and rubbed it down, treated with rust convertor and covered the entire roof with two coats of sealant. The rear of the container has also been rubbed down and re-painted by Martin and a start has been made on the side facing the track. The intention is to get a good couple of coats of paint over the entire container prior to it being cladded. 
  • On the inside of the container Martin has also been doing some repainting and has installed numerous shelves to ease our storage issues. 


Trackwork & Station 

  • Corrected some minor track alignment issues that have occurred at two joints and made a start on re-greasing the fishplates and their fixings. Some expansion gaps have been adjusted to even them out. 
  • The second platform has been completed and, with suitable signage kindly provided by Callum Dyer and his Father, it has already has been put to good use during the Easter DOWT event. Some palings are still required to complete the fencing. 

Photo gallery