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Downpatrick Railway Preservation Society.


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Downpatrick Railway.


Located in the former railway station at Downpatrick, the Downpatrick Railway Heritage Society which runs the only full size steam railway in Ireland, is staffed by a group of dedicated volunteers, they offer short steam train rides along the track which formerly connected the town with Newcastle and Belfast, There is a halt near Inch Abbey, passengers can disembark there, visit the Abbey and catch one of the trains back.

Downpatrick Railway gives you an excellent opportunity to experience the era of steam travel shunted into obscurity in the late 50's early 60's of the last century by the advent of the diesel locomotive.

The many thousands of children who are avid fans of Thomas The Tank Engine would surely appreciate the opportunity to experience the sight's, sound's and smell's of the steam age which contributed so significantly to economic development and prosperity of the country, and gave many children and indeed adults from inland towns an opportunity to visit the seaside resorts of the country using the special excursion trains which ran at holiday times.

Recently the society has installed a video surveillance system after being plagued by a spate of vandalism, resulting in broken windows and arson attempts on carriages and station buildings.

June 2007: it is hoped, subject to land acquisition to extend the line as far as Ballydugan Mill a former corn mill now converted into a hotel. If the Ballydugan Mill extension goes ahead it will mean more line to travel on by the tourists and more hard work for the volunteers. Why not get yourselves to Downpatrick, enjoy a trip down memory lane for the older among us, and give the kids or grandchildren a memorable day out, while supporting a worthy cause.

Timetable for the Inch Abbey Service.
Downpatrick Dept. 14.00 14.40 15.20 16.10 16.50
Inch Abbey Arr, 14.10 14.50 15.30 16.20 17.00
14th January 2008
E Mail
Web Site BBC

A BBC1 Northern Ireland documentary on the DCDR called "Raising Steam" will be broadcast on Monday 14th January at 10.35. For those of you not in Northern Ireland - if you've got Sky you can watch it on Channel 973. The documentary commemorates 20 years since the DCDR first ran a passenger train, and 60 years since the nationalisation of the majority of the railways in Northern Ireland.

Down Rail Website

Downpatrick Railway
Newcastle Road
Co Down
BT30 6LZ
077 9080 2049
028 4461 5779
E Mail
Downpatrick Railway Website

Visit Downpatrick Railway website to learn more about their excellent work, view images of the trains and learn about the history of railways in Ireland.

Other heritage sites in County Down.

See also our pages on The Railways in Ireland.