Sunday, 4 May 2014

Embsay & Bolton Abbey Steam Railway - Branchline Weekend

Last week we visited one of Yorkshire’s National Parks, The North Yorkshire Moors, to visit a heritage railway line. This Saturday we decided on a visit to another of Yorkshire’s National Parks, The Yorkshire Dales.

On our trips to the Settle to Carlisle Railway line, on the A59 near to Bolton Abbey, we've passed one of those brown signposts with Steam Railway on it. A little bit of Internet searching revealed this to be the Embsay and Bolton Abbey Steam Railway. This holiday weekend they were having a Branchline Weekend so we had decided on paying the railway a visit.

Bolton Abbey Station
Besides having restored steam engines, the railway also boasts some vintage railway carriages too. All of the vintage carriages are more than 100 years old and what’s more they’re not just museum pieces you actually get to ride in some of them. 

This is the inside of the carriage we chose to have a ride in. It was built by the Great Eastern Railway in 1889, for the use by their chief engineer and VIPs travelling on the Great Eastern Railway. The carriage has been put to a variety of uses since it was constructed before it was restored by Stephen Middleton. Its restoration was completed in 1998 more details of which can be found here.

The carriage has small sideways projecting windows and large panoramic windows to the rear affording excellent and unusual views of the railway and Yorkshire Dales scenery.

This is our carriage and steam locomotive at Embsay station. It was rather amazing that there were only two other passengers who took the opportunity to travel in this splendid carriage. Having been built for the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway in 1896, the steam locomotive was only slightly younger than the carriage. 

We had a couple of trips up and down the railway, lunch outside at a picnic table and a few cups of coffee too. We took Tivvy with us too. The railway was extremely dog friendly boasting its own station dog Gyp seen in the photo below. Not only was Tivvy allowed in the refreshments room but she also got to travel in the VIP carriage. 

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