Young Leeds actor Austin Haynes completes filming across Yorkshire to star in The Railway Children Return

The sequel to the iconic 1970 film The Railway Children sees 12-year-old Austin star alongside Jenny Agutter and Sheridan Smith. Stephanie Smith reports.

Austin Haynes is pictured centre in this photo issued by STUDIOCANAL of the new generation of Railway Children, including Sheridan Smith (second left) and Jenny Agutter reprising her role as Roberta "Bobbie" Waterbury (right). This is a first-look image from the forthcoming sequel The Railway Children Return. The photo also shows young stars Beau Gadsdon, KJ Aikens, Eden Hamilton and Zac Cudby. Credit: Jaap Buitendijk/PA Wire
Austin Haynes is pictured centre in this photo issued by STUDIOCANAL of the new generation of Railway Children, including Sheridan Smith (second left) and Jenny Agutter reprising her role as Roberta "Bobbie" Waterbury (right). This is a first-look image from the forthcoming sequel The Railway Children Return. The photo also shows young stars Beau Gadsdon, KJ Aikens, Eden Hamilton and Zac Cudby. Credit: Jaap Buitendijk/PA Wire

Rising star Austin Haynes, from Leeds, has won a major role in the film The Railway Children Return, due for cinema release in April next year.

Austin, 12, will feature as one of the next generation of The Railway Children in a sequel that follows a group of children evacuated to a Yorkshire village during World War II. He is pictured centre in the photo released to mark the end of production, which also shows Jenny Agutter, reprising her role as Roberta “Bobbie” Waterbury, Sheridan Smith, who plays Annie, and Austin’s fellow young stars Beau Gadsdon, KJ Aikens, Eden Hamilton and Zac Cudby.

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Austin is a member of drama school and acting agency Articulate, which has an office in Baildon, near Shipley, and runs classes for children and adults in speech and drama in Ilkley, Baildon, Bingley and Birstall, online and in person.

Principal Stacey Burrows said Austin had joined Articulate five years ago as a beginner, and had worked exceptionally hard on his acting skills. “We are incredibly proud of him,” she said. “Proud beyond words. Shooting a film like this with so much dialogue is incredibly hard work. He’s risen to the challenge and we are all in absolute awe.”

Ms Burrows added that Austin had now finished six weeks of filming for The Railway Children Return and was already back on set for his next job. He then plans to juggle three TV projects for which he has had offers, filming over the summer.

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The Railway Children Return will also star John Bradley, who played Samwell Tarly in HBO’s Game of Thrones, and Sir Tom Courtenay.

Directed by Morgan Matthew and written by Danny Brocklehurst, the new film has been shot in several key Yorkshire locations used in the original film, including The Keighley & Worth Valley Railway, in particular Oakworth Station in Haworth, and the nearby Bronte Parsonage.

Photo courtesy of Studiocanal, credit Jaap Buitendijk