This summer series of steam hauled trains provides an opportunity for passengers from York, Leeds and the Aire Valley to travel over the spectacular Settle & Carlisle Railway Line, probably the most famous railway route in Britain.
There is also the option of visiting the Cumbrian market town of Appleby or the border city of Carlisle. These day trips revive the nostalgic former days of steam when travel by train through magnificent scenery was an experience to savour.
Our steam hauled train leaves York hauled by steam locomotive No. 46233 Duchess of Sutherland or 45596 Bahamas or 45690 Leander at 09:30 and heads for Church Fenton where we take the direct route to Leeds. We stop to pick up more passengers at Leeds, Shipley, Keighley, and Skipton. There will be a stop for our steam locomotive to take on water before we join the famous Settle & Carlisle Railway at Settle Junction. Here begins one of the most arduous climbs on Britain’s railway network, a total of 15 miles mainly at a gradient of 1 in 100.
Once through Settle station, there are magnificent views across the Fells to the Pennine Three Peaks of Pen-y-ghent, Whernside and Ingleborough. We cross the breathtaking Ribblehead Viaduct, high above the valley floor, and enter Blea Moor Tunnel. We pass through Dent Dale and the highest open station in England at Dent, travelling through tunnels and crossing valleys on lofty viaducts, as we make the final ascent to Ais Gill Summit (1,169 feet). We travel high above the valley at Mallerstang and then drop down through Kirkby Stephen to Appleby, where our locomotive takes on water.
Passengers who choose to alight at Appleby will have around four hours to visit this historic market town, which lies in a loop of the picturesque River Eden. Passengers choosing to continue to Carlisle will have over one and a half hours to explore the Border City, possibly visiting the castle, cathedral, Tullie House Museum or the Lanes Shopping Centre.
Our train leaves Carlisle for the return journey at around 16:15 and climbs almost continuously for just under 50 miles back up to Ais Gill summit. We stop, en route, at Appleby for our steam locomotive to take on water and to pick up those passengers who spent the afternoon there. We continue to stops at Skipton, Keighley, Shipley, Leeds, and York, to set down passengers.
Premier Dining includes a full English breakfast and a four course dinner silver served at your seat.
First Class includes morning coffee with a variety of tulip muffins and afternoon tea with a savoury of the day followed by a selection of cakes and fancies.
Standard Class includes a reserved seat usually at a table for four.
A buffet car is available and serves tea, coffee, snacks and light refreshments. Tables for two can be guaranteed in first class and premier dining for a supplement of £25 per person. (subject to availability)
Approximate timings shown