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Guards Department – © Rory Lushman

Guards Department

There is a perception that the driver is in charge of a train and in reality it is the Guard. A train cannot leave a station or a siding until the Guard has given his/her permission to depart.

The Guard's role is varied and is a Safety Critical position. Duties can involve:


  • Preparing, inspecting a train in sidings or in the station in readiness for the day ahead.

  • Doing brake tests on the train.

  • Dispatching trains safely from stations.

  • Knowing all the rules of the railway.

  • Interacting with the public and championing the East Lancashire Railway.

  • Interacting closely with other departments such Station Staff and Train Crews.

  • Being physically fit to be able to do the role as climbing up steps from the ground level is required at times.

  • Be prepared to work in extreme weathers and also dark morning and evenings.

Every train must have a Guard and no train can run without one. The Guards Department is a friendly group of people who thrive in a Safety Critical roles whilst providing a customer facing profile of the railway.

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

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