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The Bodmin & Wenford Railway is very much ‘one railway’, but is actually made up of a number of different organisations, all of whom play a valuable role.     

There are five organisations that make up the BWR:


The Bodmin & Wenford Railway PLC

The Bodmin & Wenford Railway Company – a public limited company (No 1887852) – is ultimately responsible for the operation of the line, and safety, together with the repair and maintenance of our locomotives and rolling stock, permanent way and signalling.    It operates steam and heritage diesel heritage trains as authorised by The Secretary of State for Transport in the Bodmin Railway Centre Light Railway Order 1989.   The PLC is also the employer of the Railway’s small team of paid staff and, in effect, the ‘trading arm’ of the railway.  Its income is generated principally from train fares and the various catering and retail outlets.

The Company was formed in 1986.  Its shareholders do not receive, nor expect to receive, any form of dividend, all profits made being reinvested into the Railway.

Whilst the land on which the railway runs is actually owned by Cornwall Council, the track (rails and sleepers) are owned by the PLC.   The Company also owns much of the tools and equipment used to operate the railway.


The Bodmin & Wenford Railway Trust

The Bodmin & Wenford Railway Trust – the ‘charitable arm’ of the railway – was formed in 1987 to enable the developing BWR to take advantage of such grants, reliefs and donations as might be available.  It is a Charitable Company limited by guarantee.

The principal objectives of the Trust are to encourage and support the retention and restoration of our railway heritage and to promote education in the same, especially but not exclusively in relation to the Bodmin area.

Most of the land occupied by the Railway is owned by Cornwall Council.  This land is leased by the Council on a 35 year lease to the Bodmin & Wenford Railway Trust who then sub-lease to the Bodmin & Wenford Railway PLC.

Much of the rolling stock (locomotives, carriages and wagons) is owned by the Trust, or on long term agreements with the Trust.    The Trust owns approximately 45 per cent of the shareholding in the PLC.


The Bodmin Railway Preservation Society.

The Bodmin Railway Preservation Society (BRPS) is the principal volunteer support organisation of the Railway.   The BRPS was formed in 1984 by local businessmen and railway enthusiasts keen to preserve Bodmin's railway heritage and to see the Bodmin branch re-opened as a tourist and leisure attraction.  The Society has approximately 1,000 members.    Membership brings a number of excellent benefits, including an excellent magazine published three times a year, travel concessions on the Railway, and the chance to become an active volunteer on the line.

The BRPS supports the PLC in running and maintaining the Railway in a variety of ways, and all our volunteers must be members of the Society in order to be covered by insurance when working on site.

The Patron of the BRPS is Iona, Lady Molesworth-St Aubyn of Pencarrow House, whose family have long been supporters of the Railway.

The Cornish Steam Locomotive Preservation Society (CSLPS)

The CSLPS was formed in 1974, principally to preserve industrial locomotives used in Cornwall.

The Society initially set up a base at Bugle, on the Par-Newquay branch, but in 1986 moved their stock to the Bodmin & Wenford Railway, where they have been based ever since.   As well as the locomotives – which include Devonport Dockyard No 19 and the unique Bagnall-built ‘Port of Par’ 0-4-0 saddle tanks, Alfred and Judy – the CSLPS also owns a number of wagons that are also based at Bodmin.

If you would like to join us phone or write to the CSLPS via the Bodmin and Wenford office (01208 73666). 

The Bodmin & Wenford Main Line Diesel Group (BWMDG)

The Group is responsible for the care, repair and maintenance of the various former main line diesel locomotives currently based on the BWR, notably Class 50 No 50042 Triumph, Class 47 No 47306 (D1787) The Sapper, Class 37 No 37142 (D6842) and Class 33 No 33110 (D6527).

More detailed information is available on all the mainline diesel locomotives based at Bodmin & Wenford Railway on the following link www.bodmin-heritage-diesels.co.uk