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Diesel Locomotive Department – © Rory Lushman

Diesel Locomotive Department

With one of the largest Heritage Diesel Fleets in the UK we cover a wide range of activities and hopefully there is something for most.

Attractions of our group and the ELR.

  • The majority of the ELR diesel traction fleet is owned by individuals/ groups based on the ELR.

  • These groups carry out their own restoration, repairs and maintenance.

  • Our diesel fleet is one of the largest and most diverse in the UK and includes unique traction (e.g. Class 15, Class 28 “CoBo”, Cravens Class 105 DMU)

  • We also provide the footplate crews to operate our traction (drivers and secondman)

  • Unlike many heritage railways the ELR operates all year round.

  • Be part of one of the largest heritage railways in the UK.

  • Our groups have a wide range of skills e.g. welding, metal fabrication and machining, electrical, joinery, painting and we can never have enough of these skills.

  • Don’t be put off if you don’t have any particular skills as there are plenty of things to do and training is provided. A willingness to get involved and get a bit grubby is all you need to get started.

  • With so many groups all doing different things there is always a wide variety of work going on and there should be something for everyone.


The rewards of being a volunteer

  • Be an active part of railway preservation and operation

  • Have the satisfaction of knowing you have contributed to maintaining our railway heritage.

  • Be part of friendly, dedicated and knowledgeable teams.

  • Understand how railways work.

  • Work in a sometimes challenging but always rewarding environment.


The basics we require of volunteers

  • You must be 18 years or older.

  • Be enthusiastic and want to contribute to a very rewarding cause. 

  • Be willing to learn new skills.

  • The working environment can be a bit demanding and it helps if you are reasonably fit and don’t mind the varied Lancashire weather.

  • Experience of working in a railway environment is always beneficial but by no means essential.

  • You will need to attend a 1-day Basic Safety Course before you can start work on the railway.

  • You need to have your own safety footwear and appropriate overalls/ wet weather clothing.

  • We ask volunteers to be able to commit an average of 1 day/ month (a bit more if you are thinking of footplate duties).

For more information on becoming a working member, please contact the Volunteer Liaison Team on 07585 198455 or at

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