End of the line for Mull railway

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Isle of Mull railway
Image caption,
The narrow gauge railway is a popular tourist attraction

Services on one of Scotland's most popular narrow gauge railways have been suspended amid fears over its future.

The Isle of Mull railway runs just over one mile from the ferry terminal at Craignure to Torosay Castle.

Directors said they could not operate while the castle remained closed to the public pending a possible sale.

Closure of both the castle and railway, which was opened in 1981, is expected to hit local traders, hotels and ferry services on the island.

The Mull and West Highland Narrow Gauge Railway Company announced the suspension "with some regret".

'Frustrated operations'

In a statement, it said: "Despite the extension of the company's lease by two years, future operations have been frustrated by the proposed sale of the Torosay Castle Estate.

"The closure of the castle to the public negates the purpose of the line in carrying passengers and complicates the implementation of any meaningful timetable for 2011.

"Hopes of an early sale of the castle to an enthusiastic party who wished the railway to remain have, the board understands, not been successful.

"The directors are now pressing ahead with investigation of sale or possible alternative sites for their equipment."

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