“Infrastructure Minister Chris Thomas MHK has suggested using charities to fund and manage the island’s historic railways.

Mr Thomas, who said he is a ‘massive supporter’ of the island’s heritage railways, pointed to smaller models on and off the Isle of Man where charities have successfully run railways of varying sizes for many years. In some areas volunteer groups look after the lines.

Ahead of speaking to different organisations, including Manx National Heritage, about the issue, Mr Thomas told the Manx Independent he knows how precious every penny of public spending is and is sceptical of suggestions that the rail and tramways could be used as public transport more efficiently than anything offered, or that could be offered, by the bus service.

He also said that his upcoming meetings will think about ‘imagining a better place for our heritage rail’ that could be more distanced from the management of public transport then it has been.

The horse tramway has been refurbished in recent years as part of the government’s plans to redevelop the promenade in Douglas.

Further funding is now being sought to continue the tracks to their previous endpoint outside the Sea Terminal.”

Isle of Man Newspapers


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