The Development of the Railway by Peter Hanton (this is his own account)
Construction of the line began in December 1984 and passenger services commenced from Rudyard Station in August 1985 over a length of 300 yards and this was progressively increased by a further 100 yards by October 1985.
Easter 1986 saw the inauguration of services to the Dam giving an overall length of 700 yards. During 1986 a larger locomotive shed was constructed and run round loops installed at Rudyard and the Dam.
Work on the extension beyond the Dam started in September 1987 and regular services to lakeside commenced in August 1988. The line was then extended beyond Lakeside loop to the terminus at Hunthouse Wood over the next few years formally opening in 1993.
The original Locomotives:
No.1 Kingsley 0-4-0 Diesel Mechanical powered by a 3HP Peter AVA1. Built in 1954 by Curwen and Newbury of Devizes. Operated previously on the Shillingstone Light Railway in Dorset where is was named Belle.
No.2 0-4-0 Petrol Mechanical powered by a 1000cc BMC engine. Built about 1969 by Terry Stanhope of Leeds as a 2 foot gauge engine. Later rebuilt to 15 inch gauge. Acquired by Peter Hanton in 1971. in March 1973 it was tested on the Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway. It was re-guaged in early 1986 and arrived at Rudyard the following June. Various modifications were necessary and it was not until December that it entered regular traffic.
No. 5013 Ivanhoe 4-4-0 Steam, built in 1937 by HCS Bullock incorporating various parts from a Stirling single ex Pitmarston Moor Railway. It ran at California in England near Eversley in Hampshire then approximately to 1938 at Kerrs Miniature Railway at Arbroath in Scotland. Early in 1947 it was sold to the Royal Anchor Railway at Liphook in Hants and again in 1953 to a Mr. George Woodcock of Bishop Stortford who extensively rebuilt it including fabricating a new smokebox and fitting larger diameter driving wheels. It was bought by Peter in 1954 and ran on short lines at Gamesley near Glossop and Eaton, Congleton, Cheshire. A new copper boiler was constructed in 1976 and the engine entered service at Rudyard in May 1987. It is now in Hampshire.