IT’S DIFFICULT to explain why so many of us devote so much time to running the Keighley and Worth Valley Railway.

There are many with a passion for steam trains, who spend hours and hours lovingly restoring and maintaining the fleet.

There are others who love the camaraderie that the railway offers, with a common purpose of operating the railway day-in, day-out, whatever the weather!

For some there’s an interest in a particular area of the railway’s activity, including those with a fascination of telephony, signalling, civil mechanical engineering.

Then there are those that enjoy working on the front-line, helping with passengers’ enquiries, checking tickets, running the shops and buffets or pulling a proper pint in the on-train bar.

There are even some of us who enjoy the administration side of the operation, including organising and managing the finances, and making sure we comply with the raft of relevant legislation.

Then there are volunteers who revel in the thrill of event organisation and management, coordinating staffing rosters that can run to hundreds of roles to fill and coordinate, special train timetables to draft, and overseeing the arrangements for visiting locomotives.

We have our next big event running from Friday to Monday, May 3-6, which will see all of the above skills in action as we host our first Diesel and Mixed Traffic gala.

During this eekend we will welcome several visiting diesel locomotives, some that still run on the mainline today.

One of the planned visitors is the prototype to the High Speed Trains, the ‘125s’, which still run between London, Keighley and Skipton.

The event will see diesel-hauled services for the first two days, then a mix of steam- and diesel- hauled trains for the remainder.

Please visit the website for the latest details and timetables.

Our popular Haworth Haddocks fish and chip supper trains are selling out fast, is are our new Prosecco-tasting specials, so please check the website for availability and to book tickets.

As well as events, we need the whole range of expertise and interests to keep the wheels turning on our ordinary services.

This is particularly important as we begin our seven-days-a-week service from the end of May until the first week of September.

It will take the effort of dozens of volunteers and staff on each of the operating days to run the trains, so we are always very keen to welcome new volunteers to the team.

We have opportunities across the railway, and provide full training and support, so please do get in touch if would you like to volunteer.

In the meantime, I look forward to welcoming you on board soon.