Its all systems go with the first phase of the Lincolnshire Wolds Railway’s plan to extend its line to Louth.

The LWR currently runs steam trains between Ludborough and North Thoresby on the route of the former main line that ran from Grimsby to Boston. Now the heritage railway has started work on rebuilding a further ¾ mile of track southwards to Pear Tree Lane, close to where the old Utterby Halt station was situated.

Three lorry-loads of concrete sleepers have just been delivered to a special storage area that has been created at Pear Tree Lane to receive materials for the extension. In all, 264 sleepers, each weighing 290 kilos, have been unloaded at the site. This will shortly be followed by the arrival of thirty, 60ft lengths of rail, each weighing around a ton.

“Our fundraising appeal to extend the line has recently topped the £50,000 mark and has started to build a real momentum over the past year but we have a long way to go” said LWR spokesman Tom Jones. “This latest consignment of sleepers and rail has cost around £25,000 and will give us enough materials to reach the half-way mark to Pear Tree Lane”.

“The next big item of expenditure will be ballast, which costs around £40 a ton and we estimate the whole ¾ mile extension will require around 1,350 tons, so you can see that there are some enormous challenges ahead but with the public’s support we will continue to make progress” says Tom.

The LWR’s long term ambition is to rebuild the line in stages as far as the Fairfield Industrial Estate at Louth, where a site for a new station has been set aside.

To find out more about the railway’s ambitious plan to extend its line and to donate to the ‘Making Tracks for Louth’ appeal click here.

Our picture shows sleepers being unloaded at the Pear Tree Lane storage area. Photo by Cliff Leonard.

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