Manx Electric Railway 125th Anniversary

Please note that this event has now taken place and this listing remains for historical reference only. For all current event news please visit
M.E.R. events page.


MER 125 - 1st to 8th September 2018

1st to 8th September 2018

Eight days of enthusiast and family orientated special events on the Manx Electric Railway to celebrate the 125th anniversary of the opening on the line on 7th September 1893.

MERLeaflet

Click Here to download your FREE events guide.


How to book

Booking details and fares (if applicable) are listed for each event below. If you have any queries regarding bookings and reservations, please contact the M.E.R. 125 team at

mer125@gov.im or 01624 662525


Saturday 1st September

M.E.R. Motorman lessons

Try your hand at driving Winter Saloon No. 22 between Laxey and Lewaigue, passing along the cliff tops 588 feet above the sea at Bulgham Bay and through the scenic farmland of Maughold Parish. Car 22 departs Laxey at 10:50, 12:50 and 14:50. Participants must be aged between 21 and 75. Proof of age may be required. Four participants on each return trip.

£25. To book online visit http://www.rail.im or call the
Welcome Centre 01624 662525

Oldest and Newest Trams on Timetabled Service

Take the opportunity to ride on the railway’s oldest and newest trams; Cars 1 and 2 built in 1893 and Cars 32 and 33 built in 1906.

  • Car 1 departs Derby Castle at 11:10 & 13:40
  • Car 2 departs Derby Castle at 10:10, 13:10 & 14:40
  • Car 32 departs Derby Castle at 09:10, 10:40, 14:10 & 15:40
  • Car 33 departs Derby Castle at 09:40 & 12:40

Parallel run to Groudle Glen using Cars 1 & 2

Ride on Cars 1 and 2 in their 125th anniversary year as they run in parallel to the original 1893 terminus of Groudle. Departs Derby Castle at 09:00

Limited availability. To reserve your seat email Transport Headquarters mer125@gov.im office hours 08:30-17:00 Mon – Fri. Standard tram fares apply.


Sunday 2nd September – 125th Birthday Party

Family fun day at Laxey – 10:00 to 16:00

  • Family entertainment and village market.
  • M.E.R. Car 1, Snaefell Car 1 and Douglas Bay Horse Tram 1 at Laxey station with photographic opportunities.
  • Farmers Market
  • Vintage road vehicles on show
  • Traveling Post Office with commemorative first day covers.

Laxey and Car Shed Tours

An opportunity to see “behind the doors” of the Laxey Car Shed which houses a number of trams and trailers which are currently not used in service. Guides will explain the history of the shed and of the unusual rolling stock stored inside.
Each tour is limited to ten persons.

Tours start at 10:15, 11:15, 12:15, 14:15 & 15:15. Please meet outside the car shed on Lower Rencell Hill which can be accessed by tram or by the adjacent road from Laxey Station. Participants must NOT walk along the railway line to the shed.

£6. To book online visit http://www.rail.im or call the Welcome Centre 01624 662525

Illustated Talk and Social Evening

Join Manx Electric Railway historian Andrew Scarffe at the Laxey Working Men’s Institute for an illustrated presentation on the remarkable history of the MER over the last 125 years. The talk will feature photographs from his collection including a number of previously unseen photographs. Take the opportunity to learn more about the events taking place over the coming days.

Admission £5 on the door including MER 125 Pin Badge. Doors open at 19:30 for 20:00 start.


Monday 3rd September

Ratchet Car No.14 – Official Launch into Service

Join us for the official launch of Car No.14 after a three year restoration by workshop staff and dedicated volunteers. The Car will be officially launched at Derby Castle at 09:00, followed by a reserved return trip to Laxey for the volunteers and staff involved in the restoration.
Later in the day, members of the public will have the opportunity to ride on the restored tram, forty years after it last ran in passenger service! Groudle shuttles will depart Derby Castle at 13:25, 14:25 and 15:25.

Limited availability. To reserve your seat email Transport Headquarters mer125@gov.im office hours 08:30-17:00 Mon – Fri. Standard tram fares apply.

Edwardian Era Goods Service

Tunnel Car 6 will haul the two recently restored open wagons, No. 8 & No. 10 to Ramsey and return, re-enacting a typical MER Edwardian era goods service. Departs Derby Castle at 09:20 and returning to Derby Castle no later than 12:15.

Limited availability. To reserve your seat email Transport Headquarters mer125@gov.im office hours 08:30-17:00 Mon – Fri. Standard tram fares apply.

Evening Parallel Run with Cars 1 and 2

Ride on Cars 1 and 2 on an evening parallel run along the entire length of the Manx Electric Railway from Ramsey to Derby Castle. Cars 1 and 2 will depart from Ramsey at 18:00, arriving at Derby Castle no later than 20:00, with photo stops en route. Car 1 will depart Derby Castle for Ramsey at 16:25; Car 2 will depart Derby Castle for Ramsey at 16:40.

Limited availability so pre-booking strongly recommended. To reserve your seat email Transport Headquarters mer125@gov.im office hours 08:30-17:00 Mon – Fri. Standard tram fares apply.


Tuesday 4th September

Crossbench Photography Evening

Four Crossbench Cars, Numbers 14, 16, 32 and 33, will be posed for photography at Laxey Station, with parallel runs towards Minorca and South Cape using different combinations of trams.

Trams depart Derby Castle between 16:20 and 16:50. Event subject to weather; closed cars may be substituted in adverse weather.
Standard tram fares apply.

Mail Tram Re-Enactment

A typical 1970s Mail Tram will be in use, commemerating the M.E.R.’s long-lived mail service that will be operating for the first time since 1975, side post boxes. A serving postman from IOM Post will accompany the tram, with M.E.R. staff in period uniform offering numerous photographic opportunities. The mail tram will depart from Ramsey at 13:50.

£12. To book online visit http://www.rail.im or call the
Welcome Centre 01624 662525

Tram with Two Trailers

Car 33 will haul two trailers on a return trip between Derby Castle and Dhoon Quarry, departing Derby Castle at 09:00.

Limited availability. To reserve your seat email Transport Headquarters mer125@gov.im (office hours 08:30-17:00 Mon – Fri). Standard tram fares apply.


Wednesday 5th September – Groudle Day

1893 Groudle Service

Re-enactment of the 1893 tram service between Derby Castle and Groudle using Cars 1 and 2 with a special appearance of long lost Car 3! The Station master will be in Victorian costume and the original Groudle ticket office re-opened. Ramsey Philatelic Services will be at the station selling commemorative covers.
Regular departures from Derby Castle between 09:25 and 16:25. Groudle Glen Railway in operation between 11:00 & 16:30.
Standard tram fares apply. Go Travel cards accepted.

Tunnel Vision

1894-built “Tunnel Cars” 5, 6, 7 and 9 operating on timetabled
services throughout the day.

Car 5 departs Derby Castle at 09:10, 10:40, 14:10 & 15:40
Car 6 departs Derby Castle at 09:40, 12:40 & 16:10
Car 7 departs Derby Castle at 10:10, 13:10, 14:40 & 17:40
Car 9 departs Derby Castle at 11:10, 13:40, 16:40, 18:40, 20:45 & 21:55

Tram and Three Wagons

Open Crossbench Car 32 will haul the two recently restored open wagons Numbers 8 & 10 and Mail Van 16 to Ramsey and return. Depart Derby Castle at 12:55, returning to Derby Castle no later than 16:15.

Limited availability. To reserve your seat email Transport Headquarters mer125@gov.im (Office hours 08:30-17:00 Mon – Fri). Standard tram fares apply.

Crossbench Evening Special

Crossbench Cars 14 & 16 will operate an evening special to Ramsey and return. The cars will run in parallel from Ramsey to Laxey, with photo stops en route.
Car 14 departs Derby Castle at 17:10; Car 16 departs Derby Castle at 17:25. Parallel run departs Ramsey at 19:00.

Limited availability so pre-booking strongly recommended. To reserve your seat email
Transport Headquarters ( mer125@gov.im office
hours 08:30-17:00 Mon – Fri) . Standard tram fares
apply.


Thursday 6th September – 1975 Timetable

Special Timetable in Use

Services will operate to the Summer 1975 timetable, the last year of operation of the traditional M.E.R. timetable which had seen little alteration throughout many decades.
The first tram will depart Derby Castle at 07:00, with additional “specials” or “extras” throughout the day to give a 10 or 15 minute frequency from Derby Castle. 1975 style timetable leaflet will be available at all stations and can be downloaded in Events Brochure at the top of this page.

Goods Wagons in Use

The lines historic Goods wagon fleet consisting of Open Wagons 8 and 10, and Mail Vans 4 and 16, will be use on timetabled services throughout the day.


Friday 7th September (Anniversary Day) – Special Timetable

125th Anniversary Tram Cavalcade at Laxey
A cavalcade consisting of all operational trams with trailers and a selection of engineering stock will commence at 14:00. Trams will process through Laxey Station towards Douglas in numerical order before returning to service to either Derby Castle or Ramsey. A full commentary will be provided.
Standard tram fares apply. Go Travel cards accepted.

Plaque Unveiling at Derby Castle

A commemorative plaque celebrating 125 years of the Island’s pioneering Electric Tramway will be unveiled at Derby Castle by the Island’s Lieutenant Governor, Sir Richard Gozney at 10:00.

Intensive Timetable in Use

Services will operate to a special timetable featuring every serviceable M.E.R. vehicle. Timetable will be available at all stations and can be downloaded in Events Brochure at the top of this page.

Illuminated Tram and Trailer
Evening service using illuminated Car 9 and newly illuminated Winter Trailer 58. Departs Derby Castle 19:10.
Limited availability. To reserve your seat emailTransport Headquarters ( mer125@gov.im office hours 08:30-17:00 Mon – Fri). Standard tram fares apply.


Saturday 8th September

Edwardian Goods Service – Photography Tour
Using Car 19, open wagon 10 and mail van 4, replicating pre First World War goods workings. Departs Derby Castle 09:20, returning to Derby Castle by 12:15.

Limited availability so pre-booking recommended. To reserve your seat email Transport Headquarters ( mer125@gov.im office hours 08:30-17:00 Mon – Fri). Standard tram fares apply.

Colourful Combination – Photography Tour

Using green liveried Winter Saloon 21 and “umbrella” trailer 51, recently repainted in pre-First World War livery. Departs Derby Castle 13:20, returning to Derby Castle by 17:15.

Limited availability so pre-booking recommended. To reserve your seat email Transport Headquarters ( mer125@gov.im office hours 08:30-17:00 Mon – Fri). Standard tram fares apply.

Unusual Combinations on timetabled service

  • Car 5 and trailer 57 depart Derby Castle at 08:40, 11:40 & 15:10
  • Car 6 and trailer 60 depart Derby Castle at 09:40 & 12:40
  • Car 2 and trailer 42 depart Derby Castle at 11:10 & 13:40
  • Car 22 and trailer 61 depart Derby Castle at 10:10, 13:10 & 14:40

Horse Tram Cavalcade

The Cavalcade will commence following the last Trams arrival into Derby Castle at 18:30. Standard fares apply.


All events are subject to operational constraints and may be subject to change. Please keep up to date with this page alongside official Isle of Man Transport communication for any changes to the schedule or new information and ticket sales.

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