Volunteer with
the ELR

The East Lancashire Railway relies on volunteers all day, every day. Without people like you, we wouldn’t be able to maintain and run our heritage trains, open our stations or host the events and experiences that our guests love.

We currently have over 800 volunteers who donate their free time – mid-week or at weekends, both during the day and in the evenings – to work in a huge variety of roles on the ELR.

The East Lancashire Railway Preservation Society (ELRPS) needs your help to secure the future of our heritage line and all the locomotives on it. We need volunteers of all ages, all backgrounds and with all levels of experience to help us keep our Lancashire heritage – our magnificent British history – safe for all to enjoy.

From staffing the ticket office to restoring classic carriages, greeting guests, operating heritage signal boxes or even driving a train, if you’re looking for a wide range of volunteering opportunities in Manchester and Lancashire, we’d love to hear from you.

Download the Leaflet for more info

What experience do I need to have to volunteer?

You don’t need to have any experience to volunteer with the East Lancashire Railway, as full training will be given to those with little or no experience. All we ask is that you’re positive and enthusiastic about the ELR, you take pride in your work and you love being part of a team.

Whatever your skills or interests, whatever jobs you’ve done previously or qualifications you hold, we’ll find you a brilliant role that you’ll absolutely love.

We’ve got lots of volunteering opportunities for young people, those who’ve retired and even lots of part time options for those who can only spare a few hours each week. You just need to be over 18.

The benefits of volunteering with the ELR

Volunteering offers a wide array of benefits. Make new lifelong friends, enjoy that feeling of achievement at seeing trains running when you have been a part of restoring them, use existing skills and develop new ones and even pass knowledge on to others. There’s a passion and camaraderie running through everything at the railway that has to be felt to be believed.

As if that wasn’t enough, there are a number of perks to volunteering at the ELR:

Free trips

Enjoy limited free trips on the line, each and every year.

Family visits with a Family Membership

Bring the whole family for one free trip a year and get discounted rates for all other journeys.

Regular updates

Get a free subscription to ELR News, with articles and stories every quarter.

Most importantly, you’ll get to go behind the scenes to see how
your help and support keeps our incredible heritage railway open!

Find out more

If you are interested in volunteering with us please fill out the form below and we’ll be in touch!

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Get Involved

If you’d like to volunteer with the East Lancashire Railway, the first step is to join our East Lancashire Railway Preservation Society.

We’ll then share more details about the departments you’re interested in, to help you understand the duties and responsibilities.

We also host regular site tours where you’ll see volunteers in action, learn more about their activities, and ask any questions you might have.

And remember, you donate as much or a little time as you want.

Members Tours

The railway needs working members now more than ever. Find out about the range of volunteer opportunities on one of our frequent members tours. These tours are open to all ELRPS members,  whether you’re an existing working member or interested in becoming one.

During the tour you will be taken behind the scenes and given the opportunity to chat with those that already work in the railway. A tour typically includes a  trip to a working signal box, a look around the Carriage and Wagon works plus a visit to the extensive loco works and sidings at Baron Street.

Find Out More

To find out what we do and how you can get involved please contact our Volunteer Liaison Officer who will be more than happy to tell you more:

Margaret Wilson


07585 198455