Wielichowo, looking towards Rakonowice, 3 May 2010. Photo BTWT.
The Smigiel Railway, for many Poland’s last ‘real’ narrow gauge railway, is no more.
In a letter dated 30 December 2010 to Wiktor Snela, the Mayor of Smigiel, SKPL chairman, Tomasz Strapagiel withdrew from the operating agreement between SKPL and the Council, pointing out that, in 2010, SKPL only received 48,000 zloty of the 100,000 zloty subsidy paid by the Wielkopolska provincial government towards the costs of running the line. The remaining 52,000 zloty were retained by Smigiel Town Council – 32,000 zloty in lieu of local taxes, and 20,000 zloty to fund this year’s 110th anniversary celebrations. In the same letter Mr Strapagiel offers to continue to run the railway until such time the Council is ready to take over the responsibility for running the line on the basis that the Council cover the line’s operating deficit.
A short paragraph appears on the SKPL website to the effect that services are suspended as form 1 January 2011. It is understood that the Smigiel Railway staff have been offered alternative employment by SKPL.
The goods shed at Wielichowo, 3 May 2010. Photo BTWT.