Standard Gauge Album No. 4: The Fall & Rise of Kirkby Stephen East (Mainline & Maritime)

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An illustrated account of the thriving heritage railway restoration project at Kirkby Stephen East.

The station was originally a key calling point on the line that connected Darlington and Barnard Castle with the West Coast Main Line at Tebay. Despite a spirited fight from local communities, the line succumbed to the Beeching cuts of the 1960s and lost its passenger services in January 1962. Freight traffic continued until the 1970s, but following closure of the local quarry, that also ceased in October 1975 and the track was lifted as far as Warcop.

In 1995, the Eden Valley Railway Society was formed, with the intention of opening a heritage railway on the remaining track between Appleby East and Warcop, with plans to subsequently extend the line to Kirkby Stephen East. A few years later, an opportunity arose to acquire the station building at Kirkby Stephen and the separate venture, the Stainmore Railway Company, was formed to do so.

Since that acquisition, the station has developed into an excellent railway heritage centre, home to many unique restored NER and LNER exhibits, including Gresley teak coaches and a 50 foot turntable.

Standard Gauge Album No. 4: The Fall & Rise of Kirkby Stephen East begins with a short account of the railway’s history, including closure and revival. This is followed by a short series of colour and black and white images taken in the last few years of British Railway operation. The main section of the book is a series of colour photographs illustrating how the heritage site has developed and showing the magnificent work that has been undertaken.

All the photographs are presented in one-per-page format and all are accompanied by captions providing a narrative of the story. 96 pages. Hardback.

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