The Royal Geographical Society (RGS) produces a series of geographically-themed walks around the UK called ‘Discovering Britain’. The aim is to encourage people to explore Britain’s diverse landscapes. All these walks are available in written or audio versions on a website. They are free, self-guided and hopefully fun.
This page provides access to all news items, including older items that are no longer displayed on the homepage. The items are displayed in reverse order, with the most recent first. The FoSCL 'News' feed is also available via RSS.
Every Wednesday from 11 June to 27 August 2014
Long Preston: (near Settle) 10.50/17.50
As seen on BBC’s ‘Great British Railway Journeys’ - ITV’s ‘The Dales’ & the new BBC programme to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the saving of the line to be broadcast in April
An obituary for Margaret was published in the November edition of the Settle-Carlisle Journal. Unfortunately limited space meant that David Ward's full tribute had to be truncated. Accordingly we are publishing the full text here:
Margaret Ritchie 1945 – 2013
The untimely passing of Margaret Ritchie takes from the Settle & Carlisle scene one of its longest-serving but largely unknown dedicated supporters.
Fourteen of the North of England's rarest and best preserved signal boxes have been given Grade II listed status by the Department for Culture Media and Sport as a result of the final phase of a joint English Heritage and Network Rail project to safeguard the nation's railway heritage. The listings come as Network Rail decommissions many mechanical signal boxes to consolidate signalling into 12 regional centres.
As part of the 3 Peaks Project to enhance the visitor experience to this part of the Dales, the National Park has produced an innovative app for iphones etc (shortly available for android phones).
The app contains OS maps of the 3 peaks area, details of the 3 Peaks challenge route plus many other walks in the area. It also has details of points of interest, - geological, archaeological and wildlife related. There is information on travel, places to eat, drink and sleep etc and other tourist related topics.
The long running and ever popular radio show Gardeners' Question Time had an unusual venue when it was recorded on a specially chartered train that ran over the S&C last week. One hundred keen gardeners joined the panel of gardening experts and chairman Eric Robson as the train made the 72 mile journey from Carlisle to Settle, stopping at various stations and talking to some of the volunteers who look after the station gardens.
Patrick McLoughlin, Secretary of State for Transport, travelled on the Settle-Carlisle line last week. He met the new Managing Director of Northern Rail, Alex Hynes, at Settle, then travelled on a scheduled Northern service to Ribblehead where he had a meeting with representatives of the Settle-Carlisle Railway Development Company and the Settle-Carlisle Railway Trust. He was able to see at first hand the restored Stationmaster's House at Ribblehead and the Visitor Centre.
On 11th August 1968 British Rail ran their last steam hauled train which became affectionately known as the ‘Fifteen Guinea Special’. The train ran from Liverpool via Manchester to Carlisle. To commemorate the 45th anniversary since steam disappeared from everyday use a special ‘Fellsman’ will run on Wednesday 7th August. It is expected that this week's excursion will be hauled by two engines - LMS Royal Scot 46115 ‘Scots Guardsman’ & LMS Jubilee 45699 ‘Galatea’ offering a return journey over the spectacular Settle to
Quarry traffic by rail from the quarries around Horton-in-Ribblesdale has long been one of FoSCL's wishes. There are far too many heavy lorries transporting limestone from these quarries on the surrounding roads and through Settle. Fortunately things are now starting to move. The Yorkshire Dales National Park share our objectives on this and have sent the following reply to one of our members.
"The NP Management Plan contains the following objective:
BUS CHANGES AFTER LITTLE RED BUS CEASES OPERATIONS
The Friends of the Settle-Carlisle Line now have a Twitter account, follow us @foscl.
This is great for up to date snippets. Want more detailed discussion? Join us online and get access to the Members' Forum.
The Friends of the Settle-Carlisle Line are repeating their popular walking tours around the railway construction site at Ribblehead every Wednesday from now until September, 11th inclusive plus Saturday 17th August. The walks are free of charge.
The latest programme of guided walks for July to 2013 has been published and leaflets giving full details of all the walks are being distributed to stations, tourist information offices, and other outlets etc.
FoSCL's app and audio guides have inspired Scottish National Heritage to produce their own versions for Scotland's most scenic railway lines. They came to us for advice some 18 months ago and we and the DevCo were delighted to help them. They've already covered several of their long distance routes with more to follow.
Click here to see for yourself!
There's an excellent double-page article on our Manchester campaign in Rail issue 721, out this week. Good - and accurate - quotes from Drew Haley, Marion Armstrong and me. All thanks to our good friend Steve Broadbent.
And as a bonus, an excellent photo of the Howe & Co's siding bracket signal being replaced by a new single semaphore signal. Network Rail are donating the old bracket signal to FoSCL.
We heard at the weekend that Scottish Coal has gone into administration.
No railway line has been written about more than the Settle–Carlisle. The story of its construction by an indomitable army of navvies, and subsequent dramas when trains began to use the track, have become legendary. But just how many of these familiar stories are true?
Several Virgin Voyagers have been seen on the Settle-Carlisle Line over the Easter weekend. Unusually, we haven't been able to get detailed timetabling information from our usual sources so haven't been able to notify people in advance. The Virgin web site doesn't say much either.
We think there may be other diversions during April. This could explain why we've often seen light engines travelling up and down the S&C in recent weeks: Virgin drivers refreshing their route knowledge?
Both FoSCL walks planned for Saturday 23 March have reluctantly been cancelled. At the time of writing snow is falling over much of the region and more is forecast during the next 24 hours.
We are not aware of any disruption to train services but for up to date information please visit Northern's web site at http://www.journeycheck.com/northernrail