Volunteering and Membership
Our survival is dependent entirely on volunteers offering their time to keep the trains running. Join us today!
The most important part of Amerton Railway is not the line, the rolling stock, engines or even Isabel herself, it is our VOLUNTEERS, who run the Railway in their spare time, entirely for free.
Volunteering with Amerton Railway has become even more exciting in recent times, with the purchase of the land in 2012, the development of the Chartley Halt platform and our picnic area with more to come. The railway could not exist without the hard work and dedication of our volunteers. You do not need any specialist skills, we are happy to teach you and for you to learn at your own pace. The minimum age 14, the upper age is limitless.
Volunteer Recruitment Day
We have a Volunteer Recruitment Day where you can see all of the goings on at the railway. For information on dates and activities please visit the Volunteer Recruitment Day page.
What can I do?
Workshop volunteers – Whether you have experience or not in woodwork, engineering or maintenance we can find something for you. Our workshop is well equipped with many machines capable of making fish plates for rail joints to engine parts and there is always something which needs making, repairing or designing.
Permanent way – The work that is required to keep the rails and sleepers in good condition is something that is ongoing throughout the year, mostly on week days but sometimes needs to be done at weekends. This is something which can only be learnt through doing and helps you get outside in the fresh air.
Station Staff – Great for people who enjoy talking to the public and helping them enjoy their visit to our railway. You can train to be in our ticket office and shop or give out shed tours while customers are waiting for the next train, help maintain the platform and plants on the station.
Train Crew – Our guards are invaluable to us and help keep the trains to the timetable and help passengers at both ends of the line, assisting the engine crew with the running of the train and perform essential train checks before, during and after running has finished. They are also responsible for the safety of passengers whilst traveling. However this responsibility falls onto the driver whilst the guard is still in training.
Diesel Crew – Starting out as a shunter, leaning how to use hand signals, light signals and radios as well as using our recently refurbished signal box. Once you have shown us you have the ability to maintain a diesel loco for running and are capable of driving them safely, you can progress onto becoming a driver through our training programs.
We have a wide range of diesel locos at Amerton, some nice and easy to drive, some which require a lot of practice to master and can be a bit of a challenge.
Steam Crew – Starting out as a cleaner, you’ll progress at your own pace onto passed cleaner then onto fireman once you have shown that you can look after a loco in steam and monitor the water and fire levels correctly and understand the importance of loco maintenance.
You can then carry on to train as a steam engine driver once you have the knowledge and skills required to help train firemen and know what to do in potentially problematic situations.
We currently have four resident steam engines at Amerton and while each is different you’ll soon either have a favourite or just enjoy the smell of coal burning through the day. The most difficult skill on a steam loco is perfecting how to cook a fried egg on a shovel!
I wish to join as a member but I am unable to volunteer?
Anyone can join as a member at any time and you can still receive benefits from this as well as knowing you’re still helping contribute to the running of Amerton Railway and the restoration of our locos and rolling stock.
What’s in it for me?
Travel: You may travel for free on any normal service. Free travel does not apply to special events such as a Gala day or Santa Special and we would ask Members to let the public travel first if the train is full.
Isabel Gazette: Amerton Railway’s quarterly colour magazine with news and features on developments at the Railway.
AGM: The Annual General Meeting: This gives Members an opportunity to discuss the Board of Director’s Annual Report and contribute to the Railway’s running and development of the railway.
You can download a copy of the Membership Application Form here. This can be printed off and should be sent to the Secretary or dropped in at the railway on a running day. You can pay your Membership Subscription by cash, cheque, or card at the railway or over the phone. If you are a UK taxpayer please Gift Aid your membership which allows the Railway to claim an extra 25p in every £1 to spend on maintenance and restoration projects, you can find the Gift Aid form here.