Old Dalby

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Old Dalby is a village in the English county of Leicestershire. It is located to the north-west of Melton Mowbray. It was originally known as "Wold Dalby" or "Dalby on the Wolds". The population is included in the civil parish of Broughton and Old Dalby.

Signpost in Old Dalby by Christy Radburn
The Crown Old Dalby
View of the rear of the refurbished Crown, Old Dalby
Cottages Old Dalby
St John the Baptist Old Dalby


Old Dalby has its own village school,[1] church, Scout Hut, a retirement home,[2] the Belvoir Brewery.[3] and, from August 2015 after a closure lasting over a year, the old but newly refurbished pub called 'The Crown'. There has been no post office for several years as villagers failed in campaigning against its closure.[4] Sadly, the village shop which was located at the edge of the industrial estate is also closed.

Once a year, on the August bank holiday Monday, the village holds a fête known as "Old Dalby Day" to raise money for charities connected with the village. The fête has a thirty-year history, features many events and attracts visitors from many miles around.[5]

The Knights Hospitallers owned a preceptory in the village.

The Village Hall[edit]

The Village Hall is located at the heart of the village and embodies much of the community spirit in Old Dalby. It is the meeting place of several local societies; The Old Dalby Singers, the Wine Club, yoga classes, the crafters and a "drop in" morning amongst these. Sunday newspapers are sold from the hall and there, meetings conducted and concerts, parties, breakfasts, lunches and events arranged throughout the year. [6] The busy village hall has its own website.

Railway Test Track[edit]

Old Dalby is the location of the control centre of the former British Rail Research Division's railway test track, which runs between Melton Mowbray and Edwalton and which was universally known in the industry as simply 'Old Dalby'. Following privatisation of the UK railways, the test track was taken over by Alstom and electrified on the 25 kV overhead system in order to test the Virgin Trains tilting Pendolino fleet. During this upgrade phase, which began in 2000, the centre of operations moved from Old Dalby to Asfordby (on the outskirts of Melton Mowbray) where a depot was converted from the former National Coal Board's buildings. However, with the demise of Alstom as a train builder in the UK, the future of the test track looked bleak and there was a real possibility that it might have been closed.

On 12 February 2007, Metronet, the consortium charged with renewing a large proportion of the London Underground's lines, announced that they had taken over the test track for the testing of new tube trains. To accomplish this they electrified part of the line on the third and fourth rail system but the original 25 kV line was also retained for future use.

On 7 June 2007, Metronet announced that the contract for operating and maintaining the test track had been awarded to Serco Assurance (formerly Serco Railtest), based at the Railway Technical Centre in Derby.


External links[edit]

Coordinates: 52°48′25″N 1°00′04″W / 52.807°N 1.001°W / 52.807; -1.001