North & Midlands (5 day) June 2012
Worthing to St Pancras International
Kings Cross to Leeds – Leeds to Keighley
Keighley & Worth Valley Steam Railway
Keighley to Leeds
Leeds to Sheffield then Sheffield to Nottingham
Nottingham to Loughborough
Loughborough to Leicester then Leicester to Birmingham
Birmingham to Worcester via Lickey Incline
Worcester to Kidderminster
Worcester to Great Malvern optional
Worcester to Birmingham via Stourbridge
Birmingham to London Marylebone
Victoria to Worthing
2012 THE NORTH AND MIDLANDS
This trip centred on visiting parts of Yorkshire we had not been to but to visit several of the largest steam railways.
Having got to London we then travelled from Kings Cross to Leeds before catching a local train to the Keighley & Worth Valley railway. This is where the film The Railway Children was located. Though we didn’t see them on our visit of course there were plenty of pictures and reminders from that occasion. Having travelled to the end of the line on the return we got off at Haworth to stay overnight.
Before eating we visited the depot at Haworth. It is famous for its steep streets and several of those not fit decided to stay at the top and drink in a local bar! It was closed but we found the Bronte Parsonage Museum and also the chocolate shop which was also closed.
The next day we caught the first train back to Keighley which was one of the first single car rail buses, not the steam ride we wanted but still nostalgic in its own right. Then to Leeds.
From there via several trains and connections we called at Sheffield, Nottingham and finally Loughborough for the night.
Nottingham station was chaotic due to signalling problems as we were marched back and forth across the footbridge three times with luggage before the announced the train we were waiting for. One employee on the previous didn’t even know where the train he was on was going, Liverpool eventually.
The following morning a relation of Malcolm a bus driver deliberately stopped the service he was driving to have a chat with Malcolm in the street. He even suggested that passengers who came to get on return to the bus stop 50yds down the street where he would stop shortly.
We visited the shed at Loughborough before a steam trip down the Great Central Railway to Leicester and back. Then we caught the train to Birmingham then to Worcester down the Lickey incline to stay overnight.
Some visited the Cathedral here.
Then on Thursday we took the train to Kidderminster and the Severn Valley railway. We were surprised to see elephants which turned out to be Bewdley safari park. Also we saw the fields of poppies that are regularly shown in newspapers at this time of the year. Some stayed in Bridgenorth to eat and drink while some went back down the line to Highley and its Engine House museum.
The group reunited as it drizzled as the first wet day we had experienced over the preceding years.
The final day saw us back to Birmingham via Stourbridge where we saw the little tram that runs passengers from the station to the town.
After some disagreement as to which train we should catch common sense prevailed on the side of the organiser we caught the loco hauled carriages back to Marylebone and home. On the way we passed the train spotting embankment at West Wycombe where Ernie spent a lot of his youth.