Railway choo-ses students to help it grow

The historic diesel engine prepares to leave forWirksworth from Duffield station at the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway open day.

The historic diesel engine prepares to leave forWirksworth from Duffield station at the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway open day.

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A rejuvenated community railway line has looked to University of Derby business brains to help its company steam ahead.

After months of hard work, students have presented their business plans and recommendations on how to make the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway a top tourist destination to members of its Executive Team.

The Ecclesbourne Valley Railway was originally opened in 1867 and closed in December 1989, but was brought back into use in April 2011 by volunteers who now offer tourist passenger services along the 8.5mile line from Wirksworth to Duffield as a community venture.

Over the past year, a group of marketing and tourism students from the University of Derby have been working to devise a business plan to advise the Railway’s directors and trustees on how to attract more customers, develop new offers and generally make Derbyshire’s newest tourist attraction more profitable.

Martin Miller, General Manager of Ecclesbourne Valley Railway,