It's National Volunteers' Week, so it's time to highlight the vital role that the Dean Forest Railway Society's volunteers play in keeping the wheels turning at the railway. Our volunteers, many of whom are also members of other voluntary groups at the railway such as the Dean Forest Locomotive Group and the DFR DMU Group, put in thousands and thousands of hours of their time each year, to restore, operate and develop the railway, ensuring that the Forest will continue to echo to the beat of a steam locomotive's exhaust for decades to come.
Volunteer steam crew at Parkend with locomotive 5541. Left to right, Fireman Amy King, Cleaner Hannah Kingdon and Driver Keirran Copley. Picture: Dan Winter.
Volunteer roles at the railway filled by our approximately 275 'working members' are wide and varied, from selling tickets, raising funds and undertaking vital administration, to maintaining track, signals, rolling stock and other vital parts of the railway, and of course actually running the trains as signalmen, crossing keepers, guards, locomotive crews.
Whilst the railway does also employ a handful of paid staff, whose contribution is also very important, without our volunteers we wouldn't be able to run at all, so this post is simply to say "Thank you" to all our volunteers for the excellent work that you do!