Industrial Narrow Gauge Railways
Home | News | Railways | DVDs | DVD Services | Equipment | Links | Contact us
Back to current news
NEWS 2010
Updates on information regarding industrial and commercial narrow gauge around Europe.

This section contains details of narrow gauge sites (industrial/commercial, not preserved) still operating or news regarding closures, confirmed from recent vists, or the railway press. Please feel free to contribute to these pages and so help a broad cross section of railways, and countries to be featured. Click on the thumbnail pictures to see the larger picture.

The most recent reports will be at the top

Patz V10c

AUSTRIA:  October 2010
Pinzgauer Lokalbahn (760mm gauge) On the 12th September the route from Zell am See through to Krimml was finally re-opened. The line has been formally renamed as the Pinzgauer Lokalbahn, and is operated by the Salzburger Lokalbahnen (SLB). It had been back in July 2005 that the flooding in the valley had caused the extensive damage to the railway.

Freight trains had ceased on the line back in 1998, but they have been recently started again. So far this has only included timber from a local sawmill, and freight from a factory at Piesendorf, but the intention is to increase the volumes of this traffic.

The rebuilding of the line has allowed new speed limits of up to 80Km/h, and there are now 2 of the new Gmeinder locos, built in 2007 and 2009. Including the new locos and rolling stock, the total spend to re-open this line stands at 32 miliion Euros.
(Posted 22.10.10 Source: Today's Railways)

ROMANIA:  August 2010
Hunedoara (760mm gauge) This former limestone railway had been reported on these pages when all rails had been taken up with little warning against considerable local opposition. After signficant effort from a number of parties, the Romanian Ministry of Culture visited the trackbed and existing buildings in June and agreed to give the railway a temproary Historical Monument status. this will last for 12 months pending the full application for permanent status. The re-instatement of the railway will be for tourist purposes rather than a return to industrial use.
(Posted 22.08.10 Source: Rudolf Hanzelik)
SPAIN:  July 2010
Villablino - Cubillos del Sil (1000mm gauge) The Macosa locos working on this coal railway have been recently rebuilt. Loco Nos. 1002 and 1003 have had full width cabs built at one end. 1001 and 1004 have still to be converted. The work is being carried out by the railway's own workshops at Villablino. The current owner of the line is Coto Minero Cantábrico who took over from Minero-Siberungica de Ponferrada in 2008.
(Posted 22.08.10 Source: Today's Railways)
AUSTRIA:  May 2010
Zell am See (760mm gauge) The rebuilding of this railway is progressing well. The stretch from Mittersill to Bramberg has already been completed and re-opened. The final stretch from Bramberg to Krimml of 16km, is in progress with full re-opening due before the end of the year.
(Posted 22.08.10 Source: Narrow Gauge News)

GERMANY:  May 2010
Torfwerk Höne von Lehmden, Vechta (600mm gauge) The large peat stockpile had been cleared, and all operations at this peat mill have ceased. Checking inside the tipping shed where the locos were usually stored, confirmed this was now empty with all surroundings very overgrown. Many wagons were still present in variety of states. Most track was still in position although rapidly disappearing under peat and grass.

Torfwerk Zubrägel, Vechta (600mm gauge) Railway not in use. However in recent years the railway had only been used for part of the year. One small Schöma was definitely out of use next to the stockpile, and 3 other locos were seen in the works yard, although one was in a partially dismantled state. The tracks were all still in a useable, but poor condition with now only a single branch off to the right hand side of the moors. All other track was still in situ further out to the moors but had not been used for several years and was completely hidden in most places.

Gramoflor (Torfwerk Gramann), Vechta (600mm gauge) The rails were still present in the road leading to the peat works, but inside the works, partial redevelopment of the area where the sidings had been now means that most traces of the railway have been removed. No locos were seen on site, and at least some of them (if not all) had been moved to Wübbeler at Arkeburg.
(Posted 29.05.10 Source: Steve Thomason)

GERMANY:  May 2010
ASB Grünland, Neustadt (900mm gauge) The railway was confirmed as working normally. The newer Schöma locos were working the moors to the north west. All rolling stock is standardised, and not dissimilar to the large bogie wagons used by Bord na Mona, and track well maintained allowing relatively high speeds compared to other lines. No work was being done on the southern side of the moors so the road crossing was not in use. The second road crossing appears derelict now. Many remains of the previous 600mm gauge railway here can still be seen.

Torfwerk Neustadt, Schneeren (600mm gauge) The railway was confirmed as working normally. The two larger Diemas were double heading trains out to the moors, with the smaller locos performing shunting at the two tipplers which were both in use.

Euflor, Humuswerk Lichtenmoor (750mm gauge) The railway was working normally when visited. The new Schöma was on line work, with the older locos shunting at each end of the line. The trains were working longer hours than expected with the last train heading out to the peat moors at 17:00 on a weekday.

The above photo shows the last train of the day turning onto the 2km stretch along the roadside to the moors.
(Posted 29.05.10 Source: Steve Thomason)

GERMANY:  May 2010
Emsland Baustoffwerke, Surwold (750mm gauge) Railway working normally. The new 18 tonne Schöma was pushing the Mülhauser hydraulic wagons out to the sand pit, and pulling the loaded trains back for unloading. The previous Diema loco is still on site off the tracks in the yard. An amount of track relaying has taken place and most rail in use looks to be standard gauge profile.

Klasmann-Deilmann Torfwerk, Hesper Twist (600mm gauge) Railway confirmed working normally. This is one of the newest KD sites located between Twist and Adorf. A mix of Diema and Schöma locos were present, with locos double heading trains of up to 40 wagons out to the moors. All peat was being offloaded directly into road transport and taken elsewhere for milling.

Klinkerwerk Eickhoff, Hagen (600mm gauge) The brickworks had closed down. Checking round the side where the railway used to start from, all tracks were taken up, and piled up at the back of the site.

The main road had been resurfaced over the top of the rails which were still embedded in the road, and the only trace left was a few feet where it crossed the cycle path. All traces of the railway had also been removed from the dirt road leading away from the works. The old wooden tipping shed was closed up so it was not possible to say if the 2 locos were still on site.
(Posted 29.05.10 Source: Steve Thomason)

GERMANY:  May 2010
Erdenwerk Wietinghausen, Wietinghausen (600mm gauge) The old tipping shed on the western side of the system had been out of use for a number of years and was derelict, although all tracks were still in place in the undergrowth. The nearby road crossing and rail access to the southern moors had not been used for several weeks.

The previous rail layout at the main site by Schweringhausen had been taken up and replaced with a simple run round loop in front of a relatively new small tipping shed at the back of the site. just two locos were on the tracks operating a push pull operation from a loading point abot a mile from the works. four other locos were present but all off the tracks, with two dismantled, under repair.

Torfwerk Wübbeler, Arkeburg (600mm gauge) The railway was not operating, but was expected to be at this time of year. In that last few years the peat works had harvested peat using the railway in the last 2 weeks of May. Wagons and locos were present in the yard, and maintenace work had been carried out recently on the locos. No rail traffic had used the tracks outside the peatworks for at least several months.

AG Meiners Torfwerk, Borstel (600mm gauge) Railway confirmed as working normally. All trains were double headed from the moors using Diema locos and at least 2 trains were in constant use, with a further loco shunting at the tippler.

The above photo shows the new 5 road loco shed at the main works next to the tippler and mill building.
(Posted 29.05.10 Source: Steve Thomason)

GERMANY:  May 2010
Torfwerk Holthaus and Fortmann, Lohne-Kroge (600mm gauge) This railway was working normally with trains headed up by the relatively new Schöma taking about an hour for a return trip. The last few hundred yards into the yard from the road crossing still requires each train to be split into two and hauled up the gradient separately.

Torfwerk Archut, Elsdorf-Hatzte (600mm gauge) This small peatworks is operated by the Sauensiek peat works, and locos are transferred to Hatzte when needed. Although this works was in use late last year, nothing had moved on the railway for some time. There was one Schöma loco present in the yard. The line crosses a small country road and runs alongside the road for a short distance before re-crossing the road and running next to a farm track before reaching the peatfields.

Erdenwerk Archut, Sauensiek (600mm gauge) This is probably the smallest of the railways around Gnarrenburg, but no work had been carried out here for a long time. There were no locos or peat wagons, but the tippler and elevator were still present. The only rolling stock was a number of bogies containing lifted track panels.
Humuswerk Gnarrenburg, Steinfeld (600mm gauge) Although visited on a Sunday, this site was confirmed as operating. The unloading facility next to the main road was well used with many wagons present, and the line to the moors saw regular traffic based on the condition of the rails.
(Posted 29.05.10 Source: Steve Thomason)

GERMANY:  May 2010
Humuswerk Gnarrenburg,Klenkendorf. (600mm gauge) This short line is only 1-2km long. The loading point is next to the roadside for this railway, with an elevator loading directly into a tractor/trailer. There were no locos or wagons present at the terminus, and the railway had not been operational for some time.
Humuswerk Gnarrenburg, Gnarrenburg. (600mm gauge) This is the main site just north of Gnarrenburg, and is operational with regular trains still returning back to the main works as well as being unloaded at a workshop complex on the edge of the moors. The length of this line is approx 8-10km.

Humuswerk Gnarrenburg, Langenhausen (600mm gauge) Also situated next to the main road, this yard sees occasional use, but only as a track maintenance facility. A small Diema was here with a works train. There is now no operational tippler for unloading peat here. The loading point was found about a kilometer away where one of new (2006) Schöma locos was working with a further two older Diema locos.

Humuswerk Gnarrenburg, Findorf (600mm gauge) This is probably the smallest of the railways around Gnarrenburg, but no work had been carried out here for a long time. There were no locos or peat wagons, but the tippler and elevator were still present. The only rolling stock was a number of bogies containing lifted track panels.

(Posted 29.05.10 Source: Steve Thomason)

HUNGARY:  April 2010
Gyöngyös Forestry Railway (760mm gauge) This railway has 2 branches, and the Lajosháza branch has sufferded recently from landslides and flooding. Although there was a possibility that the whole branch would be closed, the line has been rebuilt. It has been rebuilt including an extension of 3.5km along the old formation to Szalajkahás. This extension was due to be open for service in Spring 2010.
(Posted 02.05.10 Source: Today's Railways)
GREECE:  March 2010
Peloponnese Network (1000mm gauge) The condition of this railway appears to be reflecting the poor economic state of the country. All passenger coaches are now unuseable, and in total 60% of the total rolling stock is out of service. Very few trains are running at all, and any significant repairs can take up to 8 months to complete at present.
(Posted 02.05.10 Source: Today's Railways)
FRANCE:  April 2010
Degussa, Baupte (1000mm gauge) This chemical works still uses the railway to transport peat from the neighbouring peat bog during the summer months. Although gaining permission to visit can be difficult, the railway was confirmed working from a view outside of the site.
(Posted 02.05.10 Source: Martin Barnsdall)

AUSTRIA:  February 2010
ÖBB Narrow Gauge (760mm gauge) Some details regarding the future of these railways have been announced. The lines are to be taken over by Land Niederöstereich from January 2011. The disused section from Wieselburg to Mank which lost sevices several years ago (when the Wieselburg to Gresten section was converted to standard gauge) will not reopen. so this section is likley to be taken up now. However, the future for the section from Obergrafendorf to Mank is secure.

A number of railways that had continued to be leased from the ÖBB such as the section to Heidenreichenstein, and Kienberg to Lunz will continue with museum operations and the ÖBB will no longer have any involvement. On the lines north and south of Gmümd where trains were chartered from the ÖBB, it is not yet clear whether this will continue or if another operator will take over.

The Mariazellerbahn is secture and may even have an injection of funding, but the Ybbstalbahn appears to be hit the worst with plans to only allow the Waidhofen to Gstadt section to remain open. so the Gstadt to Ybbsitz and the main section from Gstadt to Lunz are set to close.
(Posted 06.03.10 Source: Today's Railways)

AUSTRIA:  January 2010
Emsland-Baustoffwerke, Surwold (750mm gauge) Starting off the year with some belated good news. The 4km long railway serving the sand pits at Surwold for the above building firm has been upgraded last year. There is a new loco and wagons, and much of the track appears to have been relaid. This was reported on the German FeldbahnForum site, and it has a number of photos of the new loco and rolling stock.
The new Schöma weighing 18 tonnes is number 6334 built in 2009, class CHL-150 G. The 6 new Mühlhäuser side tipping wagons have a far greater capacity than the previous train of 10 wagons.

The photo below is linked from the FeldbahnForum site, and clicking on the picture will open a new browser window and take you to the photos and information on the site (in German).

(Posted 25.01.10 Source: German Feldbahn Forum)
HUNGARY:  January 2010
MÁV Narrow Gauge Line closures (760mm gauge) The long theatened line closures have finally taken place. The last 3 narrow gauge lines operated by the MÁV (at Kecskemét, Niregyháza, and Balatonfenyves) had been under review for many years. The line at Balatonfenyves looks likely to be handed over to the local authorities to operate as a tourist line, but still has only one of the 3 branches running at present. The last train on the Niregyháza line was on the 12th December and this line had already been severely cut back since last October. The last train on the Kecskemét to Kiskörös line was early, on the 11th December due to a derailment that halted services earlier than planned, and services on the Kecskemét to Kiskunmajsa branch are also now closed.
(Posted 25.01.10 Source: Today's Railways)

Back to current news

© Steve Thomason 2010
Upgraded site relaunched 1st January 2004

Home | News | Railways | DVDs | DVD Services | Equipment | Links | Contact us
Industrial Narrow Gauge Railways