VOLUNTEERS have been preparing to reopen a heritage railway.

At the Llangollen Railway the Great Western Railway Heavy Freight locomotive No.3802 was out on test on Tuesday.

Motorists on the A5 may have been surprised to see the engine pulling away from Berwyn after it stopped for the axle-boxes to be checked during the course of a test run down the Dee Valley Line to Glyndyfrdwy.

It was the first steaming for the No.3802 since it was stopped for repairs in 2019 since when a main axle has received attention and the eight wheels on the tender reprofiled.

The trip down the line also allowed for the vegetation growth to be assessed against the profile of the locomotive to see where cutting back of branches might be required, a very necessary check, as specified by the Office of Road and Rail in the procedures to be followed by all heritage railways following lockdown.

According to Llangollen Railway, the four month period has seen tremendous growth of the lineside vegetation whilst trains have not been running, all of which needs attention for safe operation on the resumption of train services.

Staff and volunteers are working hard to prepare the railway to run trains in accordance with Welsh Government regulations for social distancing whilst travelling.

General manager Liz McGuinness said. "It’s great to see our preparations for opening on August 1 are well under way.

"[On Tuesday] our volunteers tested loco 3802 to ensure it was ready for service.

"We are all excited at the prospect for reopening and can not wait to welcome everyone back to Llangollen Railway.

"Please check our website and social media for full details of the travel arrangements when they are announced."

To fine our more, visit: https://www.llangollen-railway.co.uk/