The first stage of the UK latest narrow gauge railway opened for business on Thursday 1st August. The 15in gauge Evesham Vale Light Railway, owned by Jim and Helen Shackell, is based on a greenfield site in Worcestershire’s Evesham Country Park next to the A46 bypass. The couple, assisted by a small group of helpers, have completed the first third of a mile of the line exactly one year to the day that construction started. Work has already started on the extension to finish the three-quarters of a mile balloon shaped track circuit, which should be completed next year when an official opening will take place. The completed line will pass through orchards offering picturesque views over the surrounding countryside. This new railway has two 15in gauge locomotives; a US-outline Morse 0-4-0 switcher acquired from the Bredgar & Wormshill Light Railway in Kent and a former Rhyl Miniature Railway Barnes Atlantic ‘John’ built in 1921. Light work and maintenance duties are handled by a Lister diesel. Much of the line’s rolling stock came for the Fairbourne and Barnmouth Railway before it was converted to 12 1/4 in gauge in 1985 and includes two closed carriages and a three-car articulated set.