The Weardale Railway Trust is the supporting volunteer charity for the project and works with, and is a minority shareholder in, Weardale Railways CIC., the Company which owns the line and its associated infrastructure. The Trust operates Heritage passenger services on the line through its subsidiary, Weardale Railway Heritage Services and provides volunteers to help maintain the line and stations and assist in operating services operated by Weardale Railways CIC.
Weardale Railways CIC (Community Interest Company) is the holding company for the railway. It is 75% owned by British American Rail Services (BARS). The remaining 25% is shared between the Weardale Railway Trust and Durham County Council. WRCIC provides management services for the railway and is the responsible body to the official Railway authorities. It operates the ‘The Train to Christmas Town’ themed train service in November and December. It has also operated a regular freight train service in the recent past and maintains a capacity to re-introduce such services in the future.
Weardale Railway Heritage Services is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Weardale Railway Trust. It is responsible for organising and operating the Heritage passenger trains over the line, with Trust members providing the volunteer effort.
BARS is the 75% part owner of the line and the infrastructure and is in turn wholly owned by Iowa Pacific Holdings a company based in the USA which owns and operates several railways both in the USA and overseas. In the UK, BARS also operates the Dartmoor Railway and through other subsidiary companies provides loco hire and rail maintenance facilities.