For the first time this year, it actually had a slight (yes and I mean slight) feeling of Spring on my walk from Ravenscar to Staintondale. The day hadn’t started out that way, as my first stop had been Darlington which doesn’t really have the glamour of the coast. I had called in to the ‘Ken Hoole Study Centre at Darlington Railway Museum’ to research and photocopy some more information for ‘Project R’. I’m keeping quiet for the moment on this one, but lets just say you will be hearing more about it over the coming year.
After leaving Darlington, it was onwards to the cast. This sort of links in to seeing Bramblewick at York, as it was after seeing the layout in the flesh at the weekend which made me decide to visit the coast today. The photo below looking towards Robin Hoods Bay from Ravenscar makes it very clear in my mind why the late Tom Harland chose this particular line to model. Simply stunning!
For those that do not know it, I’m referring to the Coast line that ran between Whitby and Scarborough. It actually continued northwards from Whitby before eventually reaching the industrial metropolis of Middlesbrough. The line was quiet for 10 months of the year, but come the Summer it was like a miniature Main Line, with a number of excursions. Like many Branchlines, it became a casualty of the mass closures of the 1960s. Today it is a bridal path allowing you to walk the entire 20 miles between Whitby and Scarborough. Our walk today was only a small section, between the old Stations of ‘Ravenscar‘ and ‘Staintondale’.
Journey’s Start – Ravenscar
Ravenscar is a peculiar place in that there really isn’t anything there! It was planned to rival Scarborough and Whitby, but never happened and to be honest I don’t know how it would have competed with the two other large coastal towns. Ravenscar is at the summit of the climb from Robin Hoods Bay and in this instance, where we started our walk.
As can be seen below all that is really left is the ‘Up’ Platform. The ‘Down’ had been of timber construction with the foundations for the ‘Down’ shelter being all that is left.
As we begin our 2.5 mile walk, the sea is very much apparent to our left. Rather lucky with the weather! Like with all railway walks, one can not help but thing about what wonderful iron horses would have pounded the track bed I now walk. A5s, A8s, J25s, B1s, were regulars plus the small class of BR Standard Class 3 tender engines and Standard 4 tanks used to also work the line in it’s later life.
Reminders crop up that tell us the Permanent Way used to pass through here.
The line meandered away from the sea before entering a cutting. As we entered the woods there was a beautiful gorge to the left.
Journey’s End – Staintondale
After our leisurely walk we reach Staintondale Station. A complete contrast from Ravenscar as the photos show. Both Up and Down Platforms are stone and a relatively large Station Building.
As can be seen from all these photos, I wasn’t alone with my faithful companion, Lass who very much enjoyed herself!
I hope that may have been of some interest. I’m back over at the coast in the Summer so hope to do some more Railway Walking along what must have been a beautiful line!