The railway from Nora to Örebro, opened in 1856 was the first standard gauge line in Sweden to carry passengers, although for most of its existence its primary purpose was to serve the region’s mines and ironworks. In 1905 the line was taken over, with other standard and narrow gauge railways in the region, by the Nora-Bergslags Järnväg (NBVJ). Such was the company’s concentration on freight traffic that it substituted motor buses for trains on many of its routes during the 1920s. The NBJV declined with the closure of mines and ironworks in the 1960s, the last ore train ran in 1974, and the company was taken over by the state in 1976, and finally closed in 1985.
A group of enthusiasts began to collect rolling stock for a museum or preserved railway in 1976 and when the state railway ceased to operate at Nora made the town, with its distinguished stone-built station, the centre of their operations. By 1988 the society they had formed had acquired more than 100 vehicles.
The railway operates steam and diesel locomotives and a variety of railcars. Stationary vehicles include a restaurant car where food and drink are served, a sleeping car used as a hostel and carriages with museum displays.
The railway’s operating season traditionally begins on Midsummer Eve.