Bassetlaw (North Notts) Railway Society


The Bassetlaw (North Notts) Railway Society was founded in 1974 by a group of local enthusiasts interested in promoting railways in the North Nottinghamshire area. The club is based in Retford and has its clubrooms on platform 1 of Retford Railway Station.

The members of the club have interests which cover most aspects of railways both model and full size. Modeller’s within our Society work in ‘Z’, ‘N’, ‘009’ ‘TT’,  ‘OO’, ‘EM’ and ‘O’ gauges whilst other members collect historic Tri-ang, Hornby Dublo and Tinplate trains.  The 40+ strong membership has a variety of railway interests including live steam locomotive construction, steam, diesel & electric traction and railway photography.

The society meets on the third Wednesday of each month in its club rooms on platform 1 of Retford railway station.  Meetings comprise of a mixture of visiting speakers, film & slide shows and modelling demonstrations.  In addition, a selection of evening trips are usually arranged during the summer months. In the past, these have taken the form of visits to the Stockholes Miniature Railway, Barrow Hill Diesel Depot and Doncaster Power Box.

The modelling group are currently hard at it working on new exhibition standard model railways in ‘N’, and both ‘DC & DCC OO’ gauge layouts.  The society organises an annual Model Railway Exhibition in Retford Town Hall over the third weekend of November.  If you would like to join us or would like further information about the society, please visit the ‘membership’ page, see the navigation bar.

During the weekend groups of members are often out and about on travels visiting some of the UK’s interesting heritage railways, museums or model railways.

Where is Bassetlaw?

Bassetlaw is an area in North Nottinghamshire, England, covering 245 Square miles. Situated between agricultural Lincolnshire and industrial South Yorkshire the district has two main population centres – the traditional market towns of Retford and Worksop.  Bassetlaw is steeped in history, from the legends of Robin Hood to the story of the Pilgrim Fathers. William Brewster and Richard Clyfton left their homes and friends in Bassetlaw to sail on the Mayflower.

Bassetlaw dates back to 10th century Viking times and takes its name from the ancient Wapentake, largest of the mediaeval divisions of Nottinghamshire.

The Bassetlaw Railway Society draws members from a wide area and meets in Retford. One of the oldest boroughs in England, Retford’s royal charter was granted by Henry III in 1246. In 1766 the Great North Road was diverted through the town and in 1777 a canal opened linking Retford to the river Trent. The town became a railway centre in 1849.

Today, high speed diesel and electric trains of the Great North Eastern Railway and modern diesel units of Hull Trains speed through on their way to London, York, or Edinburgh. Some 16 trains in each direction stop at Retford, bringing the capital cities only 90 minutes, and 3 hours away respectively. Further east-west lines link Retford and Worksop with Sheffield, Lincoln, and Grimsby.

In May 1998 the Robin Hood Line reached Worksop, linking the town to Mansfield and Nottingham by rail for the first time since 1965.