A HERITAGE railway in the Doon Valley has been awarded a certificate of excellence...thanks to the reviews of its visitors.

The Doon Valley Railway, near Patna, received a 'Travelers' Choice Award' from reviews website Tripadvisor.

The attraction, at the former Dunaskin Ironworks in Waterside, is Scotland's only preserved industrial railway and has operated at the site since 2005.

Formerly known as a Certificate of Excellence, the award is given annually to businesses that consistently receive 'excellent' and 'very good' ratings from customers who go to the site and rate their visit to a business, experience or attraction.

A spokesperson for the Ayrshire Railway Preservation Group (ARPG), which runs the railway, said: "The trustees and volunteers who operate the Doon Valley Railway wish to say a big thank you to all visitors who have taken the time to record reviews and rate their visit on Tripadvisor."

The railway's operators warned last year that they could be facing eviction from their home unless they raised £250,000 in just three months to buy the buildings they previously leased for a museum, cafe, shop, toilets, workshops and storage.

An appeal to raise the cash fell short of that total, but the volunteers behind the project refused to throw in the towel and reopened the attraction for a series of 'Santa Special' train rides in the run up to Christmas.

The ARPG now aims to turn a wagon repair workshop, which is still owned by the group, at the site into a small museum.

Its first open day of the summer was held on May 26.

The railway is open to the public every Sunday until the end of September from 10am until 4.30pm, though the operators said in an announcement on Facebook this week that it will not be open this Sunday, July 7, due to staff shortages.

Find out more information at doonvalleyrailway.co.uk.