Carriage restorer back in time for summer treat

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A POPULAR summer train service will be running again this year – despite its organiser achieving international acclaim.

Stephen Middleton from Harrogate has been restoring railway carriages for almost 20 years and runs the popular “strawberry specials” at the Embsay and Bolton Abbey Steam Railway.

This year, his four-year restoration of the Great East Railway directors’ saloon number eight, originally built in 1912, was chosen to be part of a production of The Railway Children in Canada. Stephen and his family travelled to see the play, which was previously brought to the National Railway Museum in York with one of Stephen’s other carriages.

But he has returned in time to run the summer services, complete with strawberries and wine for guests, this year. On Saturdays, July 2, 9, 16 and 30, three 1890s carriages, pulled by a steam locomotive, will leave Embsay at 6.30pm, travelling to Bolton Abbey and returning by 8pm.

Tickets are £15 for adults and £10 for children, with booking essential. For more information, visit www.statelytrains.com, or contact Stephen Middleton at middletonmarketing@btconnect.com or on 01423 561965.

Money from the services will be used to complete the restoraion of the only remaining steam locomotive which used to work the Pateley Bridge - Lofthouse - Scar House Dam line.