Churwell Woodland Railway

Opening up again!

We are pleased to announce that the Churwell Woodland Railway has reopened.

To help prevent further spread of Covid-19, operations will be similar to summer last year, timed tickets, social distancing, clean trains and plenty of hand sanitiser!

TIMETABLE FOR SEPTEMBER:  Trains run from 2pm - 4pm

Saturday 18th

All the above dates are subject to the weather and staff availability. Follow our Facebook page for specific announcements - CLICK HERE


Hugh approaching the 1:20 - Photo by Julian Hudson

The Churwell Woodland Railway is a 7 1/4" minimum gauge railway in Morley, Leeds, West Yorkshire.

The railway has been built as a community enterprise to encourage recreational use and enjoyment of the surrounding public-access woodland. It is operated on a not-for-profit basis by volunteers.

The railway is usually open on two Saturday afternoons each the month (April - October). We also run in conjunction with special events organised by Churwell Environmental Volunteers (usually on a Saturday) - check out the CEV Facebook pages (see links) for up-to-date information about these events.

Access to the railway is at the CEV Field Centre opposite the junction of Westwood Side/The Oaks in Churwell, and may be located using the postcode LS27 7UQ. PLEASE NOTE that there is NO car park. Limited on-road parking is available on Westwood Side, please park considerately. Better still, park further away and walk to us through our woods. See the location map.

An account of the railway's inception, construction & operation is given on the next page - scroll down the page for the latest developments.

Thanks for visiting the website - if you've not yet visited the railway, why not pop along soon?

All photos & videos (unless otherwise acknowledged) are provided by Joanna Coultous, Steve Hunter, Alan Padgett and Stephen Seale.

Visiting Locos...

Rob Flynn's 'Bridget' class loco visits us for the 'Grand Opening'

We welcome visits from owner/operators with their 7 1/4" gauge locomotives whether steam, electric or petrol or solar powered (although there's rather a lot of shade!)

Steam locos must have a current boiler certificate and ALL locos will be subject to a basic examination by our GM or deputy prior to running.

We strongly advise owners of visiting locos to arrange suitable insurance for their property as our insurance covers only our own stock and third party liability for passengers & staff.

Access is difficult and therefore the size of stock is restricted, in practical terms, to what can be reasonably handled by two people. However we have a 3' long trolley that can used to convey items down to the level crossing where they can be lifted onto the track.

The track has been laid and points built to 7 1/4" Gauge Society standards. The turntable will accommodate locos up to 6' overall length. Some curves are quite sharp and 6 wheel fixed wheel-based locos may struggle. The points are 1:4. There is a short 1:20 climb into the station, leaves and dampness here can add to the entertainment!

Our passenger stock uses bar couplings and 8mm pins, coupling jaws are approximately 5" above rail height.

We are happy to advise you on suitability and let you trial suitable locos prior to any public running. Our track may also be used for trialing locos (by prior arrangement of course).

The CWR is a short but very demanding track that will test driver & locomotive to the full!

Please contact the GM to arrange a visit.

Would you like to help us operate & maintain the railway?

Miniature Railway but 'Full-Size' Civil Engineers!

The railway is maintained & operated by members of the Churwell Environmental Volunteers, a welcoming bunch of people who always appreciative of a bit of help! We get together every Saturday afternoon from 1.30pm and run trains on two Saturdays in the month from April to October.

If you are interested in helping to operate the railway and/or maintain the infrastructure and rolling stock, then please get in touch through the contacts page. No previous skills or experience are required, just plenty of enthusiasm and a bit of reliability & commitment (if and when you decide it's for you!). So feel free to 'dip your toes in the water' - come and meet us, see what we do and how you might like to help. Whether you have a particular skill that may be of particular advantage, or want to try your hand at something different, we'll be glad to have you around. (Oh, and joining the railway team doesn't mean that you will be expected to help with any other projects that CEV have going on - although you'll be very welcome!)