How Whitby lost its scenic railway connections – Yorkshire Post Letters

From: John Fearnley, Whitby.

JAYNE Dowle is quite correct in stating that Whitby has been ‘‘left behind’’ regarding the rail network (The Yorkshire Post, May 31).

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If you wanted to get by train from West Yorkshire you would have to go via Middlesbrough – a long, circuitous and costly journey. Once upon a time, Whitby was superbly served by four railway lines. The one north to Loftus and Saltburn closed in the late 1950s.

Whitby continues to pay the price for poor rail connections, writes reader John Fearnley.

Then Dr Beeching appeared and it was proposed to close 
the three other connections – 
the line south to Scarborough, the one west to Pickering 
and Malton and the Middlesbrough line. In the 
event, the Middlesbrough
line was retained or else 
Whitby would have no railway links.

A particular tragedy was the closure of the Whitby to Scarborough line – a beautiful, scenic route which could have become a major tourist attraction.

Thank goodness we still have the Goathland heritage line to Pickering.

However, the scenic lines, tunnels and magnificent viaducts were all discarded as of no use or merit.

The North Yorkshire Moors Railway has become a popular tourist attraction between Pickering and Whitby. Photo: Gerard Binks.

The short term thinking of both British Rail and Dr Beeching virtually ‘‘murdered’’ Whitby and its rail links.

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