First opened in as the Whitby and Pickering Railway , the railway was planned in by George Stephenson as a means of opening up trade routes inland from the then important seaport of Whitby.
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The preserved line is now a tourist attraction and has been awarded several industry accolades. In , the railway started to run regular services over the 6 miles 9. In , a second platform was opened at Whitby which allowed the NYMR to run an enhanced service and led to passenger numbers in the same year of nearly , people.
The NYMR carries more passengers than any other heritage railway in the UK and may be the busiest steam heritage line in the world, carrying , passengers in Some heritage rail operations continue along Network Rail tracks to Whitby.
The railway is formed from the middle section of the former Whitby, Pickering and Malton Line which was closed in as part of the Beeching cuts. It is mostly operated and staffed by volunteers. Trains run every day from the beginning of April to the end of October and on weekends and selected holidays during the winter with no service from 24—27 December.
Trains are mostly steam-hauled ; however in some cases heritage diesel is used. At the height of the running timetable, trains depart hourly from each station. As well as the normal passenger running, there are dining services on some evenings and weekends.
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The extension of steam operated services to the seaside town of Whitby has proved popular. The railway was planned in by George Stephenson as a means of opening up trade routes inland from the then important seaport of Whitby.
The initial railway was designed and built to be used by horse-drawn carriages. Construction was carried out by navvies and coordinated by top engineers.
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In , the railway was acquired by the York and North Midland Railway who re-engineered the line to allow the use of steam locomotives. The Beck Hole Incline was re-equipped with a steam powered stationary engine and iron rope. They also added the line south from Pickering so that the line had a connection to York and beyond. Steam locomotives could not operate on the Beck Hole incline; so in the early s the North Eastern Railway started construction of an alternative route which opened in — this is the route which is still in use today.
The original route is now a 3. In nationalisation meant that British Railways took control. During this time, little changed on the line. However, in his controversial report Dr Beeching declared that the Whitby-Pickering line was uneconomic and listed it for closure; the last passenger service ran on 6 March with freight continuing until July The railway was able to reopen for running in as the North Yorkshire Moors Railway, with much of the traction provided by the North Eastern Locomotive Preservation Group.
Services to Whitby were also mooted as a possibility; one of the first was in when "Evening Star " worked a service between Pickering and Whitby. Since then, services ran sporadically with third party operators such as the West Coast Railway Company in the early s as the NYMR were not a licensed company authorised to operate over Network Rail metals. After a year of operation, the NMYR stated that , people had travelled over the new operating section to Whitby and that overall in , the railway had attracted nearly , visitors.
The preserved line is now a tourist attraction and has been awarded several tourist industry and heritage accolades.
It is included in a list of rail lines, where campaigns exist for reopening, issued by the Campaign for Better Transport. This might allow the running of steam services from York to Whitby again. To achieve this would require considerable engineering work, as the former trackbed has been built upon with houses and a supermarket.
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Reinstating this missing rail link was adopted as a policy objective by the North Yorkshire County Council some years ago; the NYMHRT board agreed to support this policy in principle, whilst having reservations about its implementation as they believed the necessary upgrade works were costly and that it would harm their business stating that they had concerns about "the effect on the railway". Hopes for this have been dampened as of October with reports that the Managing Director of the NYMR stating that they did not support any trains running along their tracks.
The bridge was formally opened by Pete Waterman on 27 March During , the NYMR announced it was applying to the Heritage Lottery Fund, as part of a new appeal to keep the whole preserved railway running for the next 50 years.
The NYMR runs several special events through the year, usually revolving around a particular theme. The railway has been seen both on television and in film. The station at Goathland has been used as Hogsmeade Station in the Harry Potter films,  the Dad's Army film  and Aidensfield in the sixties drama Heartbeat.
The railway has also featured in the documentary Yorkshire Steam , which ran for two series on local television, and in the second series of Great British Railway Journeys.
On 21 May , a steam locomotive pushing carriages was accidentally started in the wrong direction and killed a volunteer guard, Bob Lund, who was uncoupling carriages. LMS Stanier Class 5 From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
Heritage railway in England. Grosmont Tunnel yards. Deviation Junction.
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