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Alford Valley Railway

A narrow gauge tourist railway which offers a regular summer service connecting a reconstructed station in the centre of of Alford (Aberdeenshire) with Haughton Country Park, a half-mile (0.8 km) to the north. Laid out by a group of railway enthusiasts next to the Grampian Transport Museum from 1979, the first track, wagons and a locomotive dating from the 1930s came from New Pitsligo, to the northeast, where they were used as part of an industrial peat-cutting operation. Officially opened in May 1980, the Alford Valley Railway was the first 0.61-m (2-foot) gauge railway in Scotland. Over the years, trains are pulled by one of several locomotives, including Saccharine, a steam engine which was built in England in 1914 but acquired from a South African sugar plantation in 1979 and restored at Alford, and two diesel engines which were bought from the Severn Water Board in 1981. A new engine, named James Gordon after the Group's chairman, was purchased in 2001 and one of the two passenger carriages was once an Aberdeen tram-car.

The associated Alford Valley Railway Museum occupies the reconstructed station buildings of the original Alford Valley Railway. Opened in 1859, this was a rural branch of the Aberdeen-Inverness main-line which connected Alford with Kintore Junction, via Whitehouse, Tillyfourie, Monymusk and Kemnay. It closed in 1965.


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