Time to rest

26 October 2020

It has been a very intensive season this one, also a very unusual one due to the Covid-19. We started the season back in July, now so far in time that it looks like a century ago.

When the green light was given to re-open the outdoors attractions, we worked hard to adequate our beloved Railway to the new Covid-19 situation to make sure that our team of volunteers and you all, our passengers, were safe. Sneeze guard screens, hand sanitizer, gloves, coach sanitization after every use … It has been challenging but thanks to your understanding and support, the season has been a success.

We have seen thousands of passengers and visitors this year, some new, some already old friends. We hope you all had a good time and we expect to see you again next year. Thank you!

Our locomotives have been working full steam, well Chrissy has been working full steam Uncle Frank and Uncle John are diesel, and now is time to let them rest until next season. Our team also deserves a good rest for the great job they have done, thank you team!

We will see you all next year, about Easter Time. In the meantime stay tuned to our Facebook page for information and updates!

Summer Success for Ness Islands Railway

18 September 2020

The Ness Islands Railway, owned and operated by Highland Hospice, has celebrated a summer of success with a steep rise in takings compared to last year.

The Hospice took over the railway in 2019, and in its first operating season from April to October last year it produced a surplus of £14,137, all of which was donated to Highland Hospice to support the delivery of palliative care throughout the Highlands.

Due to the situation with Covid-19, the railway was unable to re-open in spring 2020, but when lockdown restrictions were eased, it started carrying passengers again at the start of July. Since then it has proved extremely popular – £12,000 being raised in July, £3,000 more than July 2019.

August then smashed all expectations with £13,000 coming in, more than double 2019’s takings of £6,000.

Highland Hospice’s Head of Fundraising Andrew Leaver said, “The volunteers at the railway have been commenting on how busy this summer has felt, and these figures really highlight this.

“There has been a lot of extra work with the added challenge of managing social distancing. We are incredibly grateful to the fantastic railway team for keeping it running so smoothly and effectively.”

He added, “Although some of this year’s August total came as a result of the railway remaining open when the schools returned, to accommodate visitors from outside Scotland, the rise in figures is still just incredible.”

“With so much of the Hospice’s fundraising having been put on hold this year, it’s great to have a success story with our much-loved railway which has brought joy to so many families this summer.”