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The Lake District is a truly stunning part of the country, with gorgeous scenery and tranquil surroundings. You can enjoy this in style when you visit Ravenglass & Eskdale Steam Railway.
Jump on-board one of these iconic contraptions and take the seven mile journey up the line from Ravenglass, which is the Lake District’s only coastal village, all the way to Dalegarth near the bottom of the England’s highest mountain, Scafell Pike.
You can enjoy this breathtaking scenic route on-board one the stations four steam engines, the oldest of which is the River Irt locomotive, which was constructed in 1894 by Sir Arthur Heywood. It is now the oldest working 15 inch gauge locomotive in the world, having first arrived in Ravenglass in 1917, after first served at a munitions factory in Gretna.
Also almost a century old is the River Esk steam engine locomotive which was actually built for Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway by Davey, Paxman & Co of Colchester in 1923. It featured various design innovations at the time, some of which proved more successful than others. Many of the original questionable design innovations such as the steam powered tender have now been replaced, resulting in a locomotive which is surprisingly reliable for its age.
The Rivermite is another steam locomotive in service on the line, which was built by Clarkson’s of York in the year of the England World Cup win of 1966. It made headlines when it was first created, being delivered to the Lake District via traction engine and caught the public’s eye due to its stunning Indian Red colours.
The baby of the group is Northern Rock, which was built in the actual workshops at Ravenglass by an on-site team led by chief designer Ian Smith in 1976. This beautiful piece of engineering was used as the basis for two further locomotives which were designed for the Shuzenji Romney Railway in Izu, Shizuoka in Japan.
With these fantastic contraptions available to view and ride on, the Ravenglass and Eskdale Steam Railway really is a train enthusiast’s dream day out. However, it is not just train spotters that the railway will appeal to, with the stunning scenery and many additional attractions in the places around the stations making it a great day out for the entire family.
Between March and October you can pay a visit to the on-site museum located in the former Ravenglass railway station and signal box. This is completely free to enter and run by Eskdale Cumbria Trust, which has been set up to preserve the Railway collections. It features models, archive information and items showcasing the history of this fantastic railway.
There is even more reason for Darwin Escapes customers to pay a visit to Ravenglass and Eskdale Steam Railway with guests staying at Keswick Reach Lodge Retreat entitled to a 10% discount on the cost of tickets. Simply present the voucher you are given upon your arrival to our resort to the Railway reception when purchasing your tickets in order to redeem the offer.
Keswick Reach Lodge Retreat is still under construction, with it currently on course to be opened to the public for the first time in December 2016. Keep up to date with the Darwin Escapes blog for more information on special offers that will be available to our guests upon their arrival in the coming months.