On the day that Hyde Park hosted its first free concert – with Pink Floyd and Tyrannosaurus Rex – those preferring the chuff chuff sound of a steam locomotive were looking backwards rather than forwards to the age of progressive rock. It’s the opening of one of the first heritage railways in Britain, the Worth Valley Railway, and scores of railway enthusiasts have flocked to Keighley to witness the historic re-opening of the line, with full brass band fanfare.
This film was made by Leeds Movie Makers member Gordon Riley, one of a collection made during the 1960s and ‘70s, including several other fine railway films. Although the Worth Valley Railway is only five miles long, it is a lovely scenic route through the heart of the Pennine Moors, stopping off at Haworth, and the location for filming the classic film ‘The Railway Children’. The line was closed to passengers in December 1961 and to goods in June 1962 by BR before the Beeching Report. Thankfully a preservation society was soon formed, and it has continued to be run by volunteers ever since. The preservation society is looking for sponsors to help put the 41241 Ivat tank loco, seen in the film, back into operation.