Arrow-Leftarrow-down arrow-left-small arrow-leftarrow-right-small arrow-rightarrow-up arrowbig-left-arrowbig-right-arrowcloseFacebook Linkedin Linkedin markscroll-arrow search speech TripAdvisor TripAdvisor twitter-inlinetwitter video-iconYouTube
Dockyard Characters23rd May 2022

Our First Qualified Female Railway Volunteer

Meet Terri Short, a Driver’s Assistant Shunter Volunteer for the Chatham Historic Dockyard Railway. Terri is the first qualified female to volunteer on the Railway. We caught up with her whilst the team were hard at work restoring the Rochester Castle locomotive.

Learn more about this restoration project here.

Terri and her husband Neal are a dynamic duo at the railway. Neal joined the railway over 15 years ago after seeing locos around the Dockyard whilst he was part of the model railway club. Terri was also inspired to join and now she is creating her own legacy.


A: It is a huge honour. At the last Salute to the ’40s weekend I was on a locomotive and as I went past I heard a woman shout “I love to see a female driver.” It was a huge, proud moment for me. Even just for the children seeing us do the smallest things such as angle grinding, if they can see me doing it then they will feel like it’s normal and want to do it.

Terri has since progressed with the Dockyard Railway and is now qualified to drive the Diesel locomotives.

The railway within The Historic Dockyard Chatham is unlike any other heritage railway operation elsewhere in the UK – in terms of its operating characteristics and its organisational structure. There is no Club or Association to join, no membership fee to pay and there are no commercial issues to manage.

The role of the railway volunteer is to operate and help maintain the railway and its equipment as directed by the Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust.

Find out more about Volunteering for Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust.

Sign up to our newsletter