Railways and Life in 1943 Wartime Whitby, Grosmont and Pickering

Experience 1943 Wartime living conditions and steam train travel between Whitby, Grosmont and Pickering on the North Yorkshire Moors and Esk Valley Railway this Autumn.

Travel Back to the Dark Wartime Years with the ‘Railway in Wartime’

A 1940s nostalgia weekend takes place on October 15 and 16 which will recreate 1943 wartime England at Whitby, Grosmont and Pickering linked by the Esk Valley and North Yorkshire Moors Railways (NYMR).

Steam trains will link wartime events over the near 30 mile long route between Whitby and Pickering via Grosmont, home to Heartbeat’s mythical Aidensfield and location for the early Harry Potter films.

Wartime Whitby

Whitby is the location for experiencing the 1940s with a typical market of the time and a wartime memories’ exhibition to visit. Wartime cooking demonstrations will also take place and a period food hall set up for the weekend.

If this isn’t to visitors’ taste, then the award winning Quayside Fish and Chip restaurant is located directly opposite the Whitby fish market. They are again finalists this year for the UK 2012 prize.

Travel by Steam Bus, Steam Train or Lifeboat?

For the transport enthusiast, decisions will have to be made as how to cram in rides on a 1938 built lifeboat, a 1931 Sentinel six wheel double geared steam charabanc and steam trains running nearly 30 miles between Whitby and Pickering.

Wartime on The Railway

The NYMR also hosts wartime events between Grosmont and Pickering for three days, October 14 to the 16th inclusive. These include street parades, vehicle displays and re-enactments along the railway using actors who recreate the armed forces, and civilians living their lives and travelling on steam trains.

North Yorkshire Moors Railway 175th Anniversary

This is also the railways’ 175th anniversary having opened in 1836 and when visiting Whitby or Middlesbrough stations, take time out to look at the North Eastern Railway wall maps made from tiles. These show the fascinating network of railways in the area – most have now long been closed.

The NYMR has recreated these different eras at their stations. Grosmont is set 50 years ago and Levisham 100 years ago while Pickering now boasts the relocated roof built in 1847.

Dracula Connection and The Transylvanian Express

Whitby is of course also home to the dramatic Abbey ruins overlooking the harbour, arguably made famous by Bram Stoker’s Dracula story. Whitby is also well known for its Goth Weekends held throughout the year. The next two are on consecutive weekends of October 28-31 and November 4-6. These weekends fill the trains and hotels so book both well in advance!

The Transylvanian Express runs on the evening of October 28 with a real bar and live music on the train between Whitby and Middlesbrough.

Travelling to the 1940s event

There are three or four trains a day operated by Northern Rail on the Esk Valley Route between Middlesbrough and Whitby – a very scenic 35 mile leisurely ride. The NYMR runs several steam hauled services every day between Whitby, Grosmont and Pickering.

The route crosses the River Esk numerous times offering great views from the train window. The line is in an area of abundant wildlife including otters and red deer which can be glimpsed from the train.

Middlesbrough is well served by trains run by Transpennine and Northern Rail providing direct links from Manchester, Leeds, York and Newcastle for example. Pickering can be reached by bus from Malton station on the York to Scarborough line.

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