After many years of effort and frustration the East Lancashire Railway preservation group succeeded in reopening the line from Bury to Ramsbottom in 1987 when, on the 25th July the first passenger train steamed out of Bolton Street Station. The line flourished and attracted many main line locomotives. Almost four years later, on 27th April 1991, the extension to Rawtenstall was opened to provide a scenic journey of over 9½ miles.
The final stage of its restoration took place on 6th September 2003, when, with the line linked with the Manchester - Halifax - Leeds line at Castleton Junction, trains started to run on a regular basis from Rawtenstall to Ramsbottom, Bury and Heywood.
This video records the Railway’s growth and achievement.