A VITAL but unsung role in the operation of the West Somerset Railway is looking for new Honorary Medical Officers.

Local doctors usually fulfil the task on a voluntary basis with the assistance of a nurse practitioner who has a long history as a volunteer on the railway.

The work of the Medical Officer is estimated as taking less than half a day a month of their time, split either in short spells or one longer one.

The post holder receives free travel on the West Somerset Railway and payment of out of pocket expenses.

The intention is that a doctor taking over the role will work alongside one of the current Medical Officers until taking over the entire role in 2015.

WSR general manager Paul Conibeare said: “With the railway carrying some 200,000 passengers per annum, we obviously have a major duty of care to observe and, as a result, we need to have the appropriate grades of staff and volunteers examined as to their fitness to carry out the work that they are called upon to do.

“We now need one or more medical practitioners who are able to carry out these exams for us.

“I would be pleased to discuss the role in more detail with any doctor, ideally based in Minehead or along the route of the WSR who would like to use their professional skills to assist us in the future.”

To find out more, contact Paul on 01643- 700388 or email paul.gm@wsrail.net