An interesting quote from HowardGWR (abridged below) on the double track thread struck a chord with me and thought Id open it up for greater debate For some while now I have become increasingly disillusioned with the preservation aspect of our railways, and by that I mean that preservation is being ignored. To cite just a few examples of where I see preservation being neglaected at the expense of commercialism, money, ease of maintenance, call it what you will but its not preservation of the past are: Large express locos on branchlines Increasing lineside vegetation growth Continuous welded rail Inappropriate buildings Rebuilding of rolling stock to new designs There are many counter arguments to these and I know that the railways need to do some of these measures to attract the public/generate more money/have a better visitor experience or whatever. Below I cite numerous other historical/preserved attractuons, and they probably do not have the same cost or infrastructure base as a railway, but they do sit in the same market and role, and seem to be doing the preservation aspect of thier brief to a much greater and better degree than our railways. I am also aware that there are numerous regulatory requirements to adhere to. But I also do not see many other heritage/preservation attractions failing so miserably to preserve or portray the past. Living mueseums such as Black Country & Beamish do not sacrifice authenticity (or perhaps more accurately perceived authenticity) in their main areas, bodies such as National Trust & English Heritage try to maintain a large degree of historical accuracy. Bodies such as these, whether you could say are preserving the past or Disneyfying it, are doing thier best to maintain historical accuracy and create the feel and ambiance of the past. For example when repairs have to be made made many historical bodies try as hard as possible to replicate the materials, methods, and skills used originally, I dont see the same desire to maintain this accuracy on our railways. Guard Jamie also on the double track thread makes a very valid point as to the use and meaning of preservation in preserved/heritage railway circles, essentailly saying that preservation is now a misnomer. Open to debate, and I know there is no right, wrong, or definitive answer to this, but Id be intertested to hear others views on this matter.