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Friday, 25 May 2018

Saltburn Miniature Railway

In a nutshell

Gauge:         `15" (381mm)

Length:         5/8 mile (1 km)

Opened:     1947


Saltburn Miniature Railway,

Tel:           01287 622712

Date of visit:     23 July 2017

Key Facts

  • The railway was first set up in 1947 by Mr. H. Dunn and was then only 300 Yards long.
  • In 1949 the railway obtained  4-4-4 tank loco "Blacolvesley", which was built in 1909 by Bassett-Lowke and is the oldest workable internal combustion locomotive in the world. It is now in private ownership and resides at the Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway.
  • In 1953, the railway was modified to allow for the running of two trains, with a passing siding.
  • By 1983, the railway was more or less derelict and was acquired by the Saltburn Miniature Railway Association, a group of volunteers
  • During 2000 - 2003, the railway was rebuilt in its present form.
  • The railway currently has three steam outline diesel powered locos (4-6-2 DE Prince Charles, 0-4-0T DH George Outhwaite, 4-6-2 DH Saltburn 150) and a live steam loco, 4-4-2 Blacklock R
  • The railway runs at weekends throughout the year, opening at 1.00pm


    My Impressions

    After a quick tour of the town and a ride on the Cliff Lift, I walked the length of the railway, taking various video shots and photos.

    On  the siding leading to the engine sheds, they were swapping over locos. 4-6-2 DH Saltburn 150 was being replaced by 4-6-2 DE Prince Charles.

     This provided me with an opportunity to see Saltburn 150, before she retired to the shed.

    The furthermost terminus of the railway is Forest Halt, where there is a platform and run-round loop.

    I walked back up the line to the main terminus, Cat Nab, which is very close to the sea front, behind a large car park.

    I bought my modestly priced return ticket and boarded the train. Before long it set off.

    After rounding a 90 degree bend, the line ran parallel with Skelton Beck, passing the engine sheds and carriage sidings, before taking a right hand curve on the banks of the beck.

    At Forest Halt, the loco ran round her train ......

    .... before proceeding back up the line.

    The track, locos and stock appeared to be in tip-top condition and the line seems to be thriving, thanks to the efforts of the volunteer workforce. Although the railway itself does not have a tea room, there are cafes within five minutes' walk at each end of the line serving a good range of refreshments. There is wheelchair access and the staff are on hand to enthusiastically answer questions.

    This railway is one of the original miniature railways, most of which adopted the then popular gauge of 15 inches (see 15" gauge railways - a short chronology). Although this railway is quite short in comparison to other 15" gauge railways, it is well worth a visit as is the town of Saltburn which retains its original feel of a Victorian seaside resort.


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