Open Air Ironstone Railway and Quarry
The Home of East Midlands Quarry Heritage In the current 'post-industrial age', our Charity believes that it is important that the endeavours of our predecessors are recorded and that the opportunity to understand their economic and social contribution to history is available to a wide community. Our Museum has been established to allow the specific area of history to be discovered by visitors.
We are based on the former Cottesmore mineral branch and the Museum is constantly developing. We have recreated an ironstone quarry at the Museum as one of the most exciting projects in recent years.
The Museum sets out to portray a typical quarry system, as it would have operated in the area during the period from around 1950 to the late 1970's when the industry closed. We have chosen this time period because our collection includes equipment horn earlier eras as well as that seen in quarries just before closure.
The Museum's open air site hosts a large collection of steam and diesel locomotives, wagons and vans together with draglines and excavators. In addition there is an indoor Museum telling the story of ironstone quarrying in the area and of the giant dragline 'Sundew', at its time the largest dragline in the World!
Steam Engine Driver Experience
We can arrange for you to operate one of our working exhibits (under supervision) at one of our organised experience days. We can arrange for you to prepare, drive and shunt the railway with a steam or diesel loco, or operate one of the quarry machines. Driver Experience days take place on days when the Museum is closed to the public but candidates can bring friends and family along to watch! Training, instruction and practical 'hands-on' experience leads up to our guests driving the exhibits themselves. Whole or half day events usually have three or four participants so there is plenty of chance to have a day to remember! Please contact us for booking details.
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