The Little Melton Light Railway – introduction

This is an internet tribute to the Little Melton Light Railway, the LMLR. The blog is created by a one-time volunteer, a grateful volunteer who thoroughly enjoyed the companionship of such splendid folk.

The Little Melton Light Railway was a 7¼inch gauge miniature railway, located not far from the city of Norwich in the United Kingdom. The railway opened once a month, throughout the year, and profits from fares went to a nominated charity. Those charities also had the barn in which to have displays, sales and other attractions.

Bob Brett lived on site. It was his land and property on which the LMLR existed. Bob drove ‘Thunderbox’, a wooden bodied lawnmower engine driven locomotive. Thunderbox, which I drove on occasion in the latter years of the railway, was probably the best known loco, and as a machine you had to push (or pull) the lever to engage drive, keep it there, and keep the twist throttle twisted. Downhill Thunderbox had a decent turn of speed, and would be the main loco on the Piggeries and return route: this meant that every second trip, Thunderbox ran backwards… thank heavens for mirrors.


Thunderbox passes Melton Wood Junction, in reverse, heading for The Piggeries. Bob drives Thunderbox, Mike is at the rear, working as the guard – a change from being Signalman! Photo courtesy & copyright ‘Little Melton Light Railway Tribute’.

There were other locos, other people, and lots of visitors. I wonder if I’m best qualified to write this internet tribute, as I was only an occasional volunteer.

Oh yes – there were the animals too.

Sadly after illness, Bob passed away. The LMLR can to an end soon after, but happily many of the LMLR locos and rolling stock survive at another railway in Norfolk. I loved the LMLR because it was a railway, while a student it meant I worked with people who weren’t students, and during my working life, it helped me do something practical rather than just a desk job.

As the months progress, I will add more photos, some stills from video, and more text about the LMLR. There was a history written, which you could buy for a few pence from the souvenir shop; hopefully I will find a copy and add to it.

In the great scheme of things, the LMLR was just another small railway which went from nowhere to nowhere: but we loved it. I hope that this tribute site will reflect that affection.

It seems that there are many miniature railways that arrive, blossom, and then like ephemera, disappear, leaving only happy memories.


Author: recreationalrailways

Just someone appreciative of the fun that can be had with miniature and model railways.

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