The Friends of the Settle-Carlisle Line has around 120 active volunteers. Some of these volunteers are employed on a fairly regular basis. Others are called on from time to time, as when they are needed for special events or projects.
A number of volunteers are On Train Guides. These volunteers travel with pre booked groups travelling on the line. As the train travels over the line, the guide will describe the passing scenery and talk about the railway. They also travel on other trains and talk to any passengers that want information, plus selling books of interest about the Settle-Carlisle Line. In spite of COVID, this activity continues, albeit on a reduced scale and with appropriate safety measures.
FoSCL normally organizes free guided walks which take place most Saturdays and some Sundays. There are around 20 experienced leaders. The walks vary in length from easy to strenuous. The walks cover a wide area of the Yorkshire Dales & Eden Valley. Due to COVID, these walks are currently in abeyance but it is hoped that they will restart in 2022.
Then there is the FoSCL committee. Not only do committee members attend regular monthly committee meetings but also sub group meetings when something has to be discussed at greater length. Some members also attend meetings with other associated railway companies, such as Network Rail and Northern Rail. Meetings now normally take place via Zoom.
FoSCL has two physical shops (one at Settle and one at Appleby), plus an online webshop. There is a dedicated team of shop people selling many of the FoSCL goods, and handling the packaging and postage of our online and mail orders. .
A comment that is usually made by the travelling public on the Settle-Carlisle line, is that the station gardens are so attractive. This is down to a team of gardeners. There is one or more for each station on the line.
From time to time there is need for small repairs to be done on the stations. As the Settle-Carlisle Line is on the National Network FoSCL is limited as to what we can do. Painting is something that is often undertaken. This is carried out by a few of the volunteers.
There is a dedicated team of leaflet distributors. This not only includes FoSCL leaflets, but train timetables and any other associated relevant information leaflets.
For other volunteers there are people looking after Armathwaite and Settle signal boxes (see the Historic Structures page), there is an Archivist, Historian/Librarian and Webmaster and many more.
In September 2020 FoSCL purchased Dent Station to preserve and enhance this very fine heritage building. Income from self-catering is used to defray the very considerable maintenance costs for an old building in a very exposed location. There are a number of opportunities here for volunteers to help with minor maintenance tasks and gardening.
This gives some insight of what volunteering is about with FoSCL. A more comprehensive overview of our voluntary activities is available in our illustrated brochure - see the FoSCL Volunteer Brochure attached below.
If you are interested in joining our group of volunteers, in the first instance please contact:
- Jon Tomlinson (Volunteers Co-ordinator)
Email : [email protected]
Phone : 07412 036738