dorset railway line

Helping the Shillingstone Railway Project achieve its goals is a dedicated team of volunteer workers. When you visit the site, you’ll meet many of them as they lay track, repair rolling stock, tend the gardens, serve in the shop and café and carry out dozens of other tasks that are necessary to keep the place neat and tidy.

Although we can’t introduce you to everyone here as the staff does vary from day to day, here are a few details of the folk you are most likely to see around the site. Give them a wave or say ‘hello’ - they don’t bite! They’ll be happy to answer any questions you might have about the work they are doing.

We apologise for the fact that there are some gaps in the profiles below.  As of Spring 2017, we are working on a re-vamp of our website and the page on the site you are looking at now is not being fully updated.  Have patience though, we will soon have a brand new site up and running with details of all the latest team members.

shillingtone railway Derek Lester-Jones
(Retail Manager & Trustee)

This is someone you are almost certain to meet if you visit the station at the weekend. Derek runs the well-stocked shop in the station building. Not just in but often spilling out on to the platform with rails of tee-shirts, stacks of books and other items you simply can’t do without. During the week, Derek is a teacher in the Portsmouth area where he lives so we are very lucky to have a helper like him who is willing to make the journey to and from Shillingstone every week.
  dorset railway Ian Harrington (Carriage & Wagon Manager & Trustee)
Ian’s major triumph (so far!) has been the restoration of the Mk1 carriage that now forms an integral part of the facilities available at the station for special events. This was another of those daunting tasks which those of you who saw the coach when it first arrived will readily appreciate. Along with a band of helpers, Ian has turned the coach into a spacious area that has been used for our AGM and various social events.
shillingstone railway line John Drew (Site Manager)
John will generally be found supervising and working on the track-laying activities in and around the station. It’s a long, hard job and there is always more work to do than there is labour available. However, John and his team are a determined bunch and, slowly but surely, the track is being extended. His skills are not restriced to the permanent way - Since last year, John and his team have been constructing the down platform shelter, thus replacing another part of the station’s fabric that had long since disappeared.
  somerset and dorset joint railway Andy Butler (Cafe Manager)
When the time comes for dressing up, Andy can be seen in his authentic Station Master’s uniform looking very efficient as he paces up and down the platform. Most of the time though, he will be getting his hands dirty with the rest of the crew providing a willing pair of hands on whatever task needs doing. And if that’s not enough, he provides a Burger Bar service at some of the events held at the station when the café is closed.
shillingstone railway Alan Wiseman (Membership Secretary, Editor Platform Magazine and Trustee)
Alan has been involved with the project in its various incarnations since the mid 1980s and has gradually worked his way up to the dizzy heights of general fixer for this and that. Despite an initial career in banking, he has moved towards the world of printing and journalism (via road transport) so his skills, whilst not necessarily deep, are varied enough to allow him to tackle most jobs. If you are a member (and if not, why not?), you will be used to receiving various letters from Alan, mainly in the cause of extracting your subscription money!



shillingstone railway

There are many other people who give their time to help out at Shillingstone. To try and avoid missing anyone out, we give below some more photos of ‘Men and Women at Work’, all helping to bring Shillingstone back to life.

trailway dorset
shillingstone railway

We are always in need of more hands. If you have the time to spare and would like to take an active role in the restoration, please ask at the station shop or, if you prefer, drop Alan Wiseman, our Membership Secretary, an email ( and let us know what skills you can offer and the kind of work you would like to do.
shillingstone railwayBeryl Beecham is the green-fingered genius behind the beautiful gardens at the station. With very little help, she creates stunningly colourful displays that hark back to the days when every station master was proud to keep a neatly-tended and well stocked garden to delight his passengers.