Leiston Works Railway Trust is a charitable organisation working to restore the factory railway line that once served the now closed Richard Garrett Engineering Works, and which represents an important but currently incomplete part of the rich industrial heritage of this small Suffolk town.
From its opening in 1859 the line connected the old Town Works to the local branch railway running from Leiston to Saxmundham. By 1912 Garretts had expanded and built their Top Works and the line was used to transport goods and materials between the two sites as well as on to more distant places. Originally the wagons were hauled by Suffolk Punch horses; in 1929 these were replaced by the steam shunting engine Sirapite now owned, and fully restored to working order, by the Leiston Long Shop Museum. For the last years of of its operation, from 1962 until the railway was dismantled in 1968, haulage was by a Battery Electric Locomotive.
You can support this unique and important heritage project in a number of ways: by coming along to our working party days, joining us at one of our fund raising events, becoming a member or perhaps sending us a donation to support our work.
If you know of any photographs or other material that recalls the heydays of the LWR or Garrett’s Engineering we’d love to hear from you.
Leiston station and works line in 1927.