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Cotswold Diesel Railcar Limited - CDRL
CDRL is registered in England and Wales as a private limited company, number 7546990.
History and Origin
The company was formed in the Spring of 2011 by a small group of volunteer workers from The Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway. In the preceeding few months, the railway had suffered a tremendous amount of bad luck, culminating in a major embankment collapse just North of Winchcombe. The damage to the embankment, at a location known as Chicken Curve, divided the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway in two and demanded a major rethink as to how railway operations could continue.
The solution was to relocate steam operations to Winchcombe, and to provide a Diesel Railcar service from Toddington. In the short term, the GWSR plc decided to hire in some 1960s Heritage Diesel Multiple Units (DMUs) as there were no suitable DMUs already at the railway.
When the opportunity arose to purchase 'Bubble Car' W55003 in full running order, a group of GWSR volunteers (ironically from the Steam Locomotive Department) quickly formed the company now known as CDRL, raised the purchase price through selling shares, and arranged for the transport of the vehicle to Toddington. This arrangement allowed the GWSR plc to operate a service on the Northern stub of the railway without incurring unnecessary hire costs.
The opportunity to purchase an additional three car DMU from the same vendor as we had dealt with previously, led to another fund raising effort culminating in CDRL purchasing and taking delivery of three additional vehicles in October 2011.
Although CDRL as a company was started by a group of steam enthusiasts, our supporters and shareholders have grown and become increasingly diverse, with volunteers from many of the railway's departments now actively involved with DMU activities.
As of April 2012, CDRL maintain a total of four DMU vehicles and all are remain available for service on the GWSR. Repairs to the embankment collapse at Chicken Curve are progressing well and CDRL are not alone in looking forward to being able to operate over the full 12 mile length of the line.