Railway & Transport Club

We meet at 7:45 pm on the 3rd Tuesday of each month, except August.  Contact: John Soer.

The Club has over 40 members and enables men and women of all ages to share their common interest.

We meet in the Bradbury Community Centre of the Methodist Church, in Rose Street, where members enjoy a wide range of good quality presentations on transport related subjects, with the opportunity for refreshments and time for a chat.

Future Programme

Currently meetings are being held via Zoom:

20 April Details to be given later

Monthly Report

On Tuesday 16th March David Brace entertained us with a presentation on the Settle and Carlisle with a side-trip along the Cumbrian coast.  The photographs were taken by David on a number of visits to the area between 1967 and 2019.  The line passes through the Yorkshire Dales and the North Pennines where it traverses some of the bleakest scenery in England.  In its 73 miles there are fourteen tunnels and 22 viaducts, and the summit is 1169 ft above sea level.

Ribblehead viaductWhile travelling by train affords wonderful views of the scenery, David also went by car so as to fully appreciate the magnificent examples of Victorian civil engineering such as Ribblehead Viaduct with its twenty-four arches.  David showed slides of many of these.

At Dent, snow fences by the side of the line give an indication of the conditions to be expected in Winter.  It is difficult to imagine what the conditions were like when the line was built.  The church at Chapel le Dale, said by many to be one of the loveliest small churches in the country, contains a memorial to those who died while building the line between Settle and Dent.

The highlight of a journey round the Cumbrian coast was a visit to the narrow-gauge line of the Ravensglass & Eskdale railway.

David ended with photographs taken from the cab of the engine hauling a train from Carlisle to Gascoigne Wood in the Selby coalfield.  These showed views of the line rarely see by the general public.

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Our next meeting will be on Tuesday 20th April; full details will be given later.

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As a result of the Covid pandemic we were unable to celebrate our 30th Anniversary.  It was in September 1990 that James King took the initiative to form a Railway Club.  With the support of Reg Elvin, the first chairman, this proved to be successful.

AndalsnesSo, by way of celebration, I show the photograph on the right (or above).  At first it appears to have little to do with railways, but a closer inspection shows that the altar is composed of railway sleepers and lengths of rail.  It is to be found in a chapel situated in an old railway coach in Andalsnes, Norway – the coastal terminus of the Rauma Railway.  This is a joint effort by the Church of Norway, the Pentecostal Church and the Salvation Army.  The chapel was consecrated in June 2003 in the presence of the King and Queen of Norway.

John Soer

Annual Report (March 2020)

No. 60WOur programme in 2019 was wide ranging, taking in topics such as Transport in the 2020s, Railway Archaeology, and an evening devoted to prose and verse on transport themes.  Geographically topics covered have ranged from Berkshire to Southern Africa.

Our average attendance of about 25 is on a par with that of similar groups in the area.

We do attract a significant number who are not church members, giving them chance to meet those with similar interests.  The sale of members’ old magazines has enabled us to raise £125 for the Railway Children Charity.

John Soer