Welcome to the Web Site of
The Belfast & County Down Railway Museum Trust
In association with The Belfast & County Down Railway Company Limited
'Down' Memory Line
Where the Past is always Present
Index History of the B.& C.D.R. Locomotives of the B.& C.D.R. Trust's Plans Ballynahinch Branch
The Railway at War Trust
Last updated - 20th February, 2015.
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SOME OF THE PAGES OF OUR WEB SITE ARE
CURRENTLY BEING UPDATED AND MAY BE BLANK
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OF EVACUATIONS FROM BELFAST
JOIN US ON A SPONSORED 'EVACUATION'
on Saturday 4th July, 2015
SEE BELOW FOR DETAILS
Photographs above: Left - A bomb crater in Ravenscroft Avenue. Bloomfield Station is at the far end of Moorfield Street.
Right - Evacuees on their way to catch the train.
Following the declaration of war with Germany on 3rd September, 1939 the government decided to
evacuate children with their mothers, and older people, from the main cities into the countryside.
The Belfast & County Down Railway was used for the evacuation of thousands of residents from
Belfast to various places in County Down, the first evacuation trains being operated in July, 1940.
Unfortunately today the railway no longer exists, so in 2015 ‘Evacuees’ will have to walk.
To commemorate the 75th anniversary of this event, the B.& C.D.R. Co. Ltd., in association with the
B.& C.D.R. Museum Trust, is organising a SPONSORED ‘EVACUATION’ WALK, to take place
on Saturday 4th July 2015, and we would invite all adults and children to please come along and participate
in what promises to be a great Educational Event, and a great ‘Fun Day Out’ for all the family.
If you would like to participate on behalf of a School/Group simply place the name and contact details on
your Registration Form, and we will send a cheque for 25% of the sponsorship money you raise to them
after the event!
The Route:- Starting at the former Bloomfield Station on the Beersbridge Road, and walking to Comber using the route of the old railway.
Start: The site of the former station facing Bloomfield Pres. Church on the Beersbridge Road.
Finish: End of the Greenway at Comber – Total distance approx. 6 miles.
Format: 1. We would invite participants, if they should wish, to dress up in 1940s style clothes to look like evacuees would have
during the Second World War.
2. All participants will be asked to Check-in on the morning before the start of the walk, when they will be issued
with an ‘Identification Card’, a map for the journey, and a ‘Ration Book’! The walk will be started at 11.00am by an
'Air Raid Warden' sounding his whistle.
3. At each of the former stations, and at some of the road crossings along the way, the ‘Ration Book’ will be stamped,
and you will receive your 'Rations'.
4. We will have ‘Crossing Keepers’ and special displays of historic vehicles and related historical material at
each road crossing. St. John’s Ambulance and/or Paramedics will also be on hand.
5. At the end of the walk the ‘Ration Book’ will be stamped for the last time, and each participant will receive a
special certificate as an acknowledgement of their participation, along with a booklet ‘The County Down Railway at War’.
6. We would ask each participant to please let us know if they require transportation back to the starting point when the
walk has finished.
A Laptop Computer will be awarded as a prize to the person who
raises the greatest amount of sponsorship.
This Laptop has been provided by:
53 High Street
Download your Registration Forms :-
Registration Form - Individual Registration Form - Group
The B.& C.D.R. Co. Ltd.,
9 Kilbright Road,
Carrowdore, Co. Down, BT22 2HQ.
Tel: 033 3344 1848 E-mail: email@example.com
For more information and to make a donation please visit:- www.railwaychildren.org.uk
It is also to provide information about the Trust's plans for the restoration of part of the former main line between Saintfield and Crossgar, as well as the line to Ballynahinch, as a Heritage Railway that will depict as closely as possible the image, the aura, and the character of the Belfast & County Down Railway during its hundred years of operation through the drumlin countryside of County Down.
the B.& C.D.R. Museum Trust?
Belfast & County Down Railway Museum Trust is a voluntary organisation that
was established by a small group of railway enthusiasts in 1972, the primary aim
being to preserve relics, artifacts, and photographic material relating to the
railways of Ireland in general, and of the former Belfast & County Down
Railway in particular.
The formation of the Trust was prompted by the loss in
the early 1970's of a number of extensive collections of Irish railway archive
materials which where not unfortunately protected in any way.
As a safeguard therefore, the Trust was registered through the Northern
Ireland Legal system at the time of its formation, thereby giving a guarantee of
security to the materials and artifacts within its collection.
The collection is overseen by a Board of Trustees who are charged with
the responsibility of ensuring its continued preservation.
The day to day running of the Trust, is in the hands of
a committee that is made up of members of the Trust who are elected at an A.G.M.
each year. This Committee
also has a representative from the Board of Trustees, who acts as the 'Go
Between', being the link between the Trustees and the membership.
Soon after its formation the Trust proposed the
development of a Working Railway Museum using a portion of the track bed of the
former Belfast & County Down Railway, and indeed was the first railway
preservation organisation in Ireland to promote the idea of an operational
railway museum. The
section of line chosen was that between Saintfield and Ballynahinch, which
incorporated two miles of the former main line between Rowallane Gardens at
Saintfield (The headquarters of the National Trust), and Ballynahinch Junction,
and also the 3½ mile branch line from Ballynahinch Junction to Ballynahinch
Town. This portion of
the line was chosen in consultation with the Northern Ireland Tourist Board.
This portion of the line was chosen in consultation with the Northern Ireland Tourist Board.
It is still the Trust’s intention, to relay the track between Saintfield and Ballynahinch, only we will be using track to the British and International gauge of 4' 8½", rather than the Irish gauge of 5' 3".
Full details of the Trust's proposed developments, how you can help, and the present state of play can be found on other pages of the web site. These can be accessed by clicking on the links above.
The Following original items from various English Football Clubs are for sale
Each is an A4 sheet of the club's headed notepaper,
and each contains the autographs of the various squads from the 1985/6 season
Genuine offers in the region of £500 are invited for each of these items
ASTON VILLA BIRMINGHAM CITY COVENTRY CITY
CRYSTAL PALACE FULHAM WATFORD
WEST HAM UNITED
Click on this logo for other ways to support our Armed Forces
and MAGAZINES etc.,
anything relating to the
& County Down Railway
B.& C.D.R. MUSEUM TRUST
9 Kilbright Road
Co. DOWN, BT22 2HQ
Freephone: 0800 980 1242 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
All items in our collection are protected for posterity under the terms of our Deed of Trust
THE LAST TICKETS HAVE BEEN ISSUED, NEWCASTLE HAS SEEN THE LAST
TRAIN OFF, AND THE SHARP WHISTLE BLASTS THAT DAILY RENT THE
MORNING STILLNESS HAVE BEEN SILENCED
AFTER EIGHTY YEARS.
shade of sadness cast its sentimental gloom over sweet County Down when the last
train passed over the many miles of the serpentine iron ribbon between Newcastle
that train rocked and shook and passed by the hills and dales and vanished like
a phantom on its journey into the past, and reminded one of the funeral cortege
of a gallant warrior who had served his country well.
Though there was no muffled drum, a death-knell did sound, not from a
louvered belfry but from the occasional short blasts from the locomotive
whistle, the signal of a duty being performed for the last time.
those sonorous blasts died away in the evening air, so passed into the limbo of
history a major portion of a railway whose embankments and cuttings will
perpetuate it in the archaeological future when much of its story will have been
those of us who remember its heyday, its decline and fall in this age of
automotive transport on the highways and byways, the old 'County Down Railway
will remain one of our most cherished memories.
the closure of the main line of the
& County Down Railway
16th January, 1950.
The following are links to a few other Irish railway sites that our visitors may find of interest.
IRISH RAILWAY RECORD SOCIETY http://www.irrs.ie/
COUNTY DONEGAL RAILWAY RESTORATION LIMITED http://www.donegalrailway.com/
CAVAN & LEITRIM RAILWAY http://www.cavanandleitrim.com/
MODEL RAILWAY SOCIETY OF IRELAND http://www.modelrailways.ie/
SOUTH DUBLIN MODEL RAILWAY CLUB http://www.sdmrc.hobbysites.net/news.php
IRISH STEAM PRESERVATION SOCIETY http://www.irishsteam.ie/
ULSTER MODEL RAILWAY CLUB http://www.ulstermodelrailwayclub.co.uk/
NORTH DOWN MODEL RAILWAY SOCIETY http://www.ndmrs.co.uk/
STUDIO SCALE MODELS http://homepage.eircom.net/~studioscale/index.html
FINTOWN RAILWAY www.antraen.com
All photographs on this site are copyright, and are not to be copied for re-sale.