Caledonian Railway’s Season Hits the BuffersNeil Hardie
Recent Coronavirus spikes have forced the decision to keep closed the volunteer-run Brechin to Bridge of Dun line.
It signals a halt for a range of services, including the popular Thomas the Tank and Friends weekend, which was scheduled for the end of this month.
Steam and Diesel weekends, and the railway’s Frying Scotsman and Sloe Train services are also cancelled.
The attraction has been running for more than 40 years and officials had been hopeful of salvaging part of the 2020 season after the railway landed six-figure funding to help it prepare for post-lockdown visitors.
It said customers who have purchased tickets will be contacted in due course and refunds issued.
It is not yet known if the December Santa specials will go ahead.
Although trains have not been running, funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, Angus Council and SCVO 3rd Sector Resilience Fund has been used to perform critical maintenance on the four-mile line and volunteers have restored rolling stock.
Caley officials have also used the season-ending announcement to repeat their warning to people not to risk their lives by walking on the line, where trains are continuing to run as part of the maintenance programme.
It follows reports of youngsters being on the tracks near Brechin.
The railway announcement comes days after Angus’s most popular tourist attraction, Glamis Castle, revealed it will also be bringing the shutters down early.
The castle and grounds will close on August 31 instead of the end of October, when up to 18 people will lose their jobs.