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Heritage Railway Issue 269

Heritage Railway is the definitive news source for the UK heritage railway scene. With its extensive network of contacts, Heritage Railway brings you amazing exclusives every month - along with features, stunning imagery, gala reports and much more.

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United Kingdom
Mortons Media Group, Ltd
$4.57(Incl. tax)
$53.21(Incl. tax)
12 Issues

in this issue

3 min.
that pioneering spirit is winning again!

MANY landmark anniversary celebrations have fallen victim to the Covid-19 lockdown in recent weeks, but despite losing its gala, there was still no stopping the Middleton Railway – which, as illustrated in News, pages 10/11, privately went ahead with its special train to mark 60 years to the day since the first public service was run on a standard gauge heritage line. The Keighley & Worth Valley Railway was forced to cancel its special event to mark half a century since one of the most successful and endearing family movies of all time, The Railway Children, was filmed on its line and released to cinema audiences. Accordingly, in this issue, we focus on that film which not only elevated to immortal stardom but gave untold publicity to the still nascent revivalist movement,…

10 min.
dartmouth leads the way out of lockdown as steam returns for summer

JULY 23, 2020, may have marked either the beginning of the end of the greatest crisis that the UK heritage railway sector has ever faced… or the end of the beginning. As the world faced its greatest hidden killer in living memory, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that the lockdown restrictions imposed to curb the spread of Covid-19 would be eased further. That announcement lit the blue touch paper for many of the lines, who for four months had been deprived of income from ticket sales and retail outlets vital for their survival, and found themselves existing on donations (News, page 12). Despite their enthusiasm to run again, expert advice has been carefully sought from local councils and bodies like the Office of Rail and Road as to how best to effect the…

2 min.
worth valley, chinnor, south devon and bodmin in new ‘reverse beeching’

SEVERAL heritage railway venues are included in a new shortlist of 50 bids from MPs and councils in the second round of the Government’s £500 million Restoring Your Railway Fund. In late January, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps launched the £500 million fund to help restore lines closed in the 1960s after the Beeching report, and invited bids. In May, the first round saw 10 shortlisted applications awarded £50,000 towards a feasibility study. One of the second round bids includes a daily all-year-round service for commuters on the Keighley & Worth Valley Railway (KWVR), (a pre-Beeching closure). The plan was first suggested in 2011 but axed because the local authorities would not subsidise it. KWVR chairman Matt Stroh said the bid was lodged just to ascertain at this early stage whether there was now…

2 min.
steam in action at minehead station for two weekends

STEAM is on course to make a return to the West Somerset Railway (WSR) – although there are no plans to restart services. WSR plc has announced plans for two Living Museum community weekends at Minehead station, on July 25/26 and August 1/2. It is intended to have a steam locomotive shunting around the station. The turntable will be in action with a steam locomotive being turned 180 degrees, allied to a competition for children to work out how to shunt wagons. There will be visits to the engine shed with close inspection of locomotives and hourly tours of the engineering workshops. Cafes will be open for sale of refreshments, hot food and drinks and a burger van will be available for snacks in the station yard The station bookshop will be open for sale…

2 min.
tributes paid to traction inspector jim smith

THE main line steam scene is in mourning following the passing of Jim Smith, a popular traction inspector for DB Cargo, on June 27. Paying tribute on behalf of The A1 Steam Locomotive Trust (A1SLT), Graeme Bunker-James, said: “We have lost one of the key people in Tornado’s history and someone with a unique position in ensuring the locomotive’s success. The first main line test runs operated under Jim’s supervision, including the legendary run from Newcastle to York in 2008. He was also with us on a variety of trips after that, the length and breadth of the country and most happily in the north east. It was Jim who took charge of the 100mph run in April 2018, with many superb and memorable runs in between. “Always referred to as ‘Gentleman…

1 min.
sir rod stewart joins lner b17 no. 61673 spirit of sandringham builder

ROCK star Sir Rod Stewart CBE has become a patron of the new-build group the B17 Steam Locomotive Trust. A lifelong railway enthusiast, Rod has been creating his own model railway layouts for many years. As reported in issue 255, he donated £10,000 the Market Deeping Model Railway Club in Lincolnshire, 48 hours after four vodka-drinking teenagers broke into a sports hall where its annual exhibition had been set up and caused more than £80,000 deliberate damage on May 18 last year. The trust is building a replica of LNER B17 4-6-0 No. 61673 Spirit of Sandringham at the Llangollen Railway. A statement from the trust said: “To have the support of a high-profile personality like Sir Rod is a great boost at this time! It is possible that he may have some personal memories…