Cleethorpes Coastal Light Railway

Since 1948 the Cleethorpes Coastal Light Railway has been a feature of Cleethorpes entertainment since 1948.  With changes over the years the railway continues to delight families and visitors.

Track route from Wikipedia

Detail of the Light Railway tracks (from Wikipedia 2017).

The track for Cleethorpes Light Coast Railway was first laid in 1948 and the railway is still operational today.

Cleethorpes Coast Light Railway runs along the Humber coast for two miles and has its origins in a miniature railway that opened in 1948 to serve the Humberston Fitties holiday camp, a complex of historic holiday chalets, which runs alongside Thorpe Park. It was originally established as a 10 1/4in line but was reconfigured to a standard 15in in 1993. There is a local myth that the railway originated to service the Humber forts during the First World War and that railway tunnels still exist along this stretch of the coast.

The central station of the CCLR is Lakeside with one of a number of steam and diesel engines taking visitors to Kingsway Station near Cleethorpes town and the seafront, or Humberston Station, situated at the back of Thorpe Park and near the Meridian Line. (The railway passes along the back of Beach Hut No.9 on Marine Embankment.) As well as being the base for the railway Lakeside station is also home to the smallest pub on the planet ‘The Signal Box Inn’.

The original railway, which included mostly ex-WD equipment recovered from the Nocton Estates rail system near Lincoln and coaches from the closed Ashover Light Railway in Derbyshire, was moved lock, stock and track to a new home further down the coast at Skegness in 1985 and now operates as the Lincolnshire Coast Light Railway.

In 2002, a National Lottery grant enabled the Cleethorpes Coast Light Railway to acquire stock from the long-dismantled Sutton Miniature Railway from Sutton Coldfield, this included ‘Sutton Belle’, ‘Sutton Flyer’, No. 4 and Bassett-Lowke Class 10 Little Giant ‘Mighty Atom’. The station canopy and engine sheds moved to Lakeside as a museum.

In recent years regular events at the railway include A Day Out With Thomas, 1940s weekend, Easter Eggspress, rail ale and blues festival, Hallowscream express and Santa specials.

It runs for nearly 2km from the Kingsway terminus near the Leisure Centre, over and past the Boating Lake and onto Meridian Park and Pleasure Island (passing along the back of Beach Hut No.9 on Marine Embankment) before ending at North Sea Lane.

So for over sixty years the Light Railway has been part of the entertainment for the Cleethorpes seafront area.

Photo from internet

Cleethorpes Light Railway

Behind Beach Hut No.9 2017.

Thank you

To everyone who has contributed to this story.

In particular to our Bygone Beachcombers volunteer – Sarah Palmer.

Further information

The website for the Cleethorpes Coast Light Railway is the obvious place to start.
with the History page here being particularly relevant

Book: “Eastern Main Lines, Lincoln to Cleethorpes” by MiddletonPress, 2014.
A copy of this book which includes information about the Cleethorpes Light Railway is held at Beach Hut No.9.

DVD: “Dave’s Railway Videos – The Cleethorpes Coastal Light Railway”, filmed in 2004.
This DVD is part of the Bygone Beachcombers resource library and is available on request.

Background information can be found on Wikipedia here
which includes numerous additional references


The Bygone Beachcombers project has archived some online materials on our website here as an archive in case external websites become inaccessible in future years. Where possible this is done with permission of the owners of the original materials. In all circumstances however the copyright of materials below remains with the original copyright creators and owners.

Brochure for the 2017 season for Cleethorpes Coast Light Railway.
(archived from September 2017)

A History of Cleethorpes Coast Light Railway.
(wording archived from September 2017)