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Strathspey Railway Company


RCD’s Overview

This heritage railway runs along the River Spree, with the Cairngorm Mountains ever present as background scenery. Trains pass through attractive mixed landscape including moorland, woods and the aforementioned river. The railway once formed part of the Highland Railway main line between Perth, Aviemore and Inverness. Today the railway runs 10 miles from Aviemore (where it connects with Network Rail main line services) north to Boat of Garten and Broomhill. The railway has an impressive collection of steam locomotives, many with a Scottish flavour. This railway is a must go destination for anyone visiting the Cairngorms/Speyside area.

The support group is the 'Strathspey Railway Association' (see 'Information on the Suport Group' below).


Happening This Month:

  • Go to 'Homepage' and click into 'Railway Club Calendar'

Key Facts (where and when)

Extent of Railway (where to where):

Aviemore to Broomhill via Boat of Garten (Strathspey)

Principal Visitor Centre:

Aviemore Station (PH22 1PY)

Period of Operation*

- Mid to late February: Vintage railcar service (selected days)

- Late March to May, also October (Weekends, Wednesdays and Thursdays)

- June and September (Weekends, Wednesdays and Thursdays and Fridays)

- July and August (Daily except Mondays)

- Late November and December (Special event trains)

 [* This is a summary. Please go to the railway’s website for definitive operating days] 


Key Facts (what you’ll see)

Services usually steam or diesel?

Primarily steam. Occasional diesel locomotives

Type of Steam / Diesel Locomotives Used:

Range of steam and diesel locomotives

Length of Line:

10 miles

Time taken for a round trip:

1 hour 45 minutes

Number of trains per day:

3 in each direction

Number of Stations:

3 stations


Adult: £19.50. Senior: £17.55. Child: £9.75. Family: £43.25

Time to allow for Visit:

2 to 3 hours





Picnic/Play areas:


Preservation Established:


Car Park Facilities:

Available at each station


Key Facts (Galas/Events/Dining)

Dining Trains:

- Light lunches on selected services

-  Afternoon teas on selected services 

Event Trains:

- Santa’s Express: Late November and December

- Festive Afternoon Tea: Post Xmas December

- Mince Pie Special: Post Xmas December 

Principal Galas:

- Summer Event: July




Telephone:                                                           01479 810 725


Social Media:                                            

                                                                             Also on Twitter/ Instagram/ YouTube


Brief History of the Railway and its Preservation

The railway once formed part of the Highland Railway main line between Perth and Inverness which was opened in 1863. Before that time the only means of reaching Inverness by rail was via Aberdeen. That line was partially owned by the Highland Railway (Inverness to Keith) and by the Great North of Scotland Railway (Keith to Aberdeen). The latter company frustrated efficient operation of the line from Inverness, and ultimately interests in Inverness determined to support the building of a direct line south from Inverness to Perth. The terrain immediately south of Inverness is particularly challenging, so it was decided to build the line south from a point part way along the Highland Railway’s exiting Inverness - Keith route, at Forres. This made the section of the line between Aviemore and Inverness somewhat circuitous, going via Grantown and Forres, but much shorter than the Aberdeen route. Within thirty years however the Great North of Scotland Railway was seeking its own route to Inverness, and largely to forestall that effort, the Highland Railway built a shorter route between Aviemore and Inverness via Carrbridge, which was opened in 1898. The Aviemore - Grantown - Forres route then became largely superfluous but was retained until closed in 1965. In 1971 a railway preservation group was formed, intending to buy and operate part of the line. In 1978 the line between Aviemore and Boat of Garten was opened as a heritage railway, subsequently extended to Broomhill. The current intent is to rebuild further to a new station at Grantown.


Principal Aspiration

To extend the line from Broomhill to Grantown


Steam Operational Locomotives:

(1) Caledonian Railway Class 812 (3F) 0-6-0 (McIntosh) - No. 828

(2) LMS Class 5MT (Black 5) (Stanier) - No. 5025

(3) LMS/BR Class 2MT 2-6-0 (Ivatt) - No. 46512 ‘E. V. Cooper, Engineer’


Diesel Operational Locomotives:

(1) BR Class 04 shunter - D2774

(2) BR Class 08 shunter - 08490 (D3605)

(3) BR Class 27 - No. 27050 (D5394).

(4) BR Class 31 - No. 31327 (D5862)

(5) BR Class 37 - No. 37674 (D6869)

(6) Ruston & Hornsby shunter - Works no 265618

(7) Thomas Hill Vanguard shunter - Works no. 277V


Steam Locomotives Under Overhaul:

(1) LMS/BR Class 2MT 2-6-0 (Ivatt) - No. 46464 ‘The Carmyllie Pilot’

(2) RSH WD 0-6-0ST Austerity - No. 9


Diesel Locomotives/DMU Under Overhaul:

- Heritage DMU Class 117 - Sc51367 and Sc51402


Stored/ Under Restoration/ Out of Service:

- Andrew Barclay - No. 17 ‘Braeriach’

- Andrew Barclay - (works no. 2020) No. 2 ‘Balmenach’

- BR Class 26 - 26002 (D5302)

- BR Class 26 - 26025 (D5325)

- Andrew Barclay shunter - Works no. 517 ‘Power of Enterprise’

- North British Locomotive shunter - Works no. 27549

- Ruston & Hornsby shunter - Works no. 260756

- Heritage DMU Class 107 - Sc51990 / Sc52008 / Sc52030

- Heritage DMU Class 114 DTC E54047

- Heritage DMU Class 117 Sc59511



Name of Support Group:

Strathspey Railway Association

Annual membership fee:

Adult: £30. Senior: £25 Junior and Student: £15. Family: £40 Life: £550

Own Website:


Use contact box on website


Benefits of membership:                                  

-          Travel at one quarter of the normal fare on standard services

-          The opportunity to volunteer in many ways on the railway

-          Quarterly magazine ‘The Strathspey Express’


How to Join:                                                    Go to


What They Say About Volunteering:

Volunteers are the lifeblood of the Strathspey Railway. Many of the people you see working here are volunteers but we are always looking for more. The extent of your commitment will be up to you. You may choose to come on a particular day (or days) each week, or perhaps you can only manage to come on odd days when you are available, your help will be invaluable and you will be made very welcome.


How to Volunteer:                                   Go to


How to Donate:                                       Go to


WHY JOIN:  Help the railway extend from Broomhill to Grantown.



Those interested in this railway may also be interested in the following railway societies also listed on this



Traditional Railway Societies:

- Highland Railway Society

- Great North of Scotland Railway Association


Model Railway Clubs:

- Inverness & District Model Railway Club

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