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Spring sees the North Yorkshire Moors Railway reaches the age of 40 and to celebrate this milestone, the NYMR has planned a special anniversary day and a 10 day festival to mark the occasion.
On the 01 May 1973 the Duchess of Kent royally opened the North Yorkshire Moors Railway that has since become the world’s most popular heritage railway, visited and enjoyed by 350,000 people each year.
40 years to the day on Wednesday 01 May 2013, a special train will run from Whitby hauled by K1 2-6-0 No 62005. It is hoped that the newly over-hauled ‘Lambton, Hetton & South Jocy Colliery’ tank No 29 (one of the engines that worked the royal train in 1973) will double-head the train at Grosmont to make the picturesque journey along the line to Pickering. The fare for travel on and the special train is £40. Special souvenir tickets will be issued signed by one of the original Royal Train drivers, Chris Cubitt. The 40th Anniversary day and festival that will follow is a great chance to celebrate everything that has helped the railway develop, during our first 40 years.
The 10 day ‘NYMR 40’ Festival will take place from Friday 3rd to Sunday 12th May and will focus on the locomotives that have contributed to the history of the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. Highlights include the appearance of Neil Boden’s LNER B1 No 1306 ‘Mayflower’, and visits back home’ by the North Eastern Locomotive Preservation Group’s K1 No 62005 and J72 No 69023 ‘Joem’.
The home based fleet will be headed up by the Sir Nigel Gresley Locomotive Preservations Trust’s A4 Pacific No 60007, and Thompson B1 Locomotive Trust’s No 61264 – making a first special event appearance since overhaul.
The NYMR believe this is the first time both surviving B1 locos have appeared together on a heritage railway. These were the very last class of steam locomotive to work the line for British Railways prior to closure in 1965, so should be an exciting spectacle to see.
The Festival will also feature 3 LMS Black 5s, including Ian Riley’s 44871 and 45407, and North Eastern Railway shuttles using the NER design J72 and the NER Saloon No1 that featured as the “Old Gentleman’s Coach” from the “The Railway Children” (at a special supplement). Demonstration freight trains will run on various days throughout the event. There will be a chance to travel in style through the heart of the North York Moors in a Post War LNER train through a pairing of ‘Mayflower’ and the LNER Coach Association’s teak coaches.
If all that wasn’t enough there will be steam runs along the Esk Valley line from Whitby and Grosmont to Battersby Station on Saturday 4 and 11 May. Scarborough & District Railway Modellers will be displaying a model railway exhibition in the Learning Centre on Platform 2 on the 11-12th May featuring Haymarket Cross (as seen in Hornby & BRM magazines) Rumbling Bridge, Heron Lane & Glengary.
It’s not just the anniversary that is a cause for celebration, but also the recent exciting announcement of £1.4 million funding package, from the Coastal Communities Fund, Network Rail and the Railway Heritage Trust that should see a second platform reinstated at Whitby to allow more NYMR trains to run to the resort in 2014.
Which has been the ideal start to our 40th Anniversary year, and reflects the growing success of the steam service now in its seventh year to Whitby. It is also a hugely important boost for the Esk Valley railway line. Working with partners Network Rail, station operator Northern Rail and the Esk Valley Railway Development Company, the aim is to produce a station we can all be proud off.
Adult day rover tickets start from £23. Book online before 1st April 2013 and use the code 10SPRING and save 10% on for selected NYMR 40 Festival tickets www.nymr.co.uk. Details of the full line up of locomotives for the NYMR 40 Festival are attached.
The North Yorkshire Moors Railway is open every day from 22nd March – 3rd November from7 the 23March until 3 November.
For more information please call 01751 472508, book online www.nymr.co.uk or follow us on Twitter @NYMR and Facebook @North Yorkshire Moors Railway.