Get planning! Full details announced for the Isle of Man Year of the Railways 2023!

As we know 2023 is set to be an exciting year on the Isle of Man with it being marketed as “Year of the Railways 2023” to help celebrate 150 years of the Steam Railway and 130 years of the Manx Electric Railway. Events taking place throughout the year have already been teased but now full details have been announced of what is planned – with a full week in July plus special events at the start of July for the Steam Railway and September for the MER.

The main dates for your diary are as follows:

  • Saturday 1st July – Isle of Man Steam Railway celebrations to mark the exact 150th anniversary of the first trains running on the Douglas to Peel line on 1st July 1873.
  • Sunday 23rd to Sunday 30th July – Manx Transport Festival is extended to eight days to celebrate both anniversaries with many special events and the Douglas Bay Horse Tramway and the Snaefell Mountain Railway not being left out of the fun either!
  • Sunday 10th September – Celebrating 130 years of the Manx Electric Railway which first ran on 7th September 1893.

There are so many things happening during these events that its difficult to list them all here without it being an incredibly long article so you can see the exact plan by downloading the leaflet at

Highlights include:

  • Relaunch of MER Trailer 19 (Sunday 23rd July)
  • MER parallel runs and special motor and trailer combinations
  • MER Engineering Car 34 diesel shuttles (Monday 24th July) and 34 running with two trailers (Tuesday 25th July)
  • Derby Castle Shed Tours (Wednesday 26th July, Sunday 30th July)
  • Laxey Car Shed Tours (Thursday 27th July)
  • Douglas Bay Horse Tramway Cavalcade (Friday 28th July)
  • Snaefell Mountain Railway Workshop Tours (Saturday 29th July)
  • Manx Electric Railway and Snaefell Cavalcade (Saturday 29th July)
  • Douglas Bay Horse Tramway 18 with two horses (Sunday 30th July)
  • 130th Anniversary Parallel run (Sunday 10th September)
  • Snaefell Mountain Railway Workshop and Laxey Car Shed Tours (Sunday 10th September)

Plus there will be special intensive timetables in operation on the MER including on Sunday 30th July and Sunday 10th September.

There is so much going on this small list doesn’t really do it justice so head on over to the online leaflet at to see exactly what is happening on each day – there is sure to be something to whet the appetite if you even just have a passing interest in the railways and tramways on the Isle of Man.

  • Our own Events Diary will be updated in due course with full details of these events too.
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