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Manx Electric Railway museum to open on Sunday

Manx Electric Railway workshop supervisor Steve Hall, left, and volunteer museum curator Norman Dowd getting the artefacts ready for the MER Museum opening at 11am on Sunday

Manx Electric Railway workshop supervisor Steve Hall, left, and volunteer museum curator Norman Dowd getting the artefacts ready for the MER Museum opening at 11am on Sunday

The Manx Electric Railway Museum will open for the first time at 11am on Sunday at Derby Castle in Douglas.

The museum’s collection of artefacts has been curated by Derby Castle workshop supervisor Steve Hall.

He explained: ‘When I started here last year I was surprised there wasn’t a dedicated museum for the MER like the Steam Railway has at Port Erin.

‘We have a wealth of historical artefacts that I’m sure passengers would be interested in seeing. They have been discovered in tidy-ups of our workshops plus in people’s sheds. Others were in storage at Banks Circus, the public transport headquarters.’

The museum contains information boards about the history of the trams and items for people to handle include an old controller and armature, part of a tram’s engine.

Volunteer curator is MER enthusiast Norman Dowd. He said: ‘The MER is truly unique – I know of nothing else quite like it anywhere in the world.

‘The route between Laxey and Ramsey passes through some of the most attractive scenery in the island and the railway can also boast that it operates the oldest tramcar in the world - a fact recorded in the Guinness Book of World Records.

‘In view of all this, I made the decision to move to the island when I retired and I spend as much time as I can trying to support the railway.

‘When I heard that they were looking for a volunteer to man the new museum I jumped at the chance and I am delighted to be involved with this exciting new venture.’

The museum will be open to the public from 11am to 3pm on the second and last Sunday each month from 8 June to 26 October, plus on Mad Sunday (June 1).

Admission is free although donations will be accepted to fund improvements to the museum.

Isle of Man Railways regrets that access to the museum is not suitable for people with disabilities. There is no public parking next to the site, which is a short walk from the north end of Douglas promenade.

 

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