The last day of the NYMR “50th Anniversary ‘closure’ gala” really saw the clock put back to the mid 1960s. With motive power quite befitting the occasion the line up of engines was really quite believable – well, save for Gresley – whose presence at galas on the line is a given while in steam. The motive power and crews made splendid work of the day. The K1 and K4 were paired throughout and Black 5 Eric Tracey, and BR standard 4MT 76079 were both kinds of engines that visited the line, or were seen frequently respectively.
However, the gala allowed frequent use of the line to Whitby, with no Northern winter Sunday service, allowing the sight of two steam trains in the seaside terminus at once – sadly a photograph that escaped. The NYMR now has the issue of its sheer size. Given its length the ability to see all the action now means more than one day consecutively, perhaps even more, especially if travel is included. White this is indeed a cause for celebration, developments on how it continues will be interesting although the rewards of running to Whitby are clear given the obvious increase in passengers.
With the increase in service to Whitby, I spent most of the day off the NYMR proper. I found vantage points that I had hitherto not tried or for many others were rare. There is no doubt that some of these in time will become as iconic as the rest of the NYMR, particularly ones between Grosmont and Goathland. Whitby station given the way trains run round is already seeing the reverse into the headshunt and the run round view from the car park as favourites.
2015 marks a turning point for the NYMR. 50 years since it was due for closure but also marks its return to Whitby and a full season with the increased service into its own second platform. What a year it will be...
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