While Hexham, in thrall to developers Rokeby and Homebase, prepares for the bulldozers to move in and demolish the Warehouseman’s Bothy and the historic Stables building at Hexham Station (other stables by the same NER Architect Wm Bell, to  a similar design, at Monkwearmouth and at York are Grade II listed) –  others are about to celebrate their rail heritage.

See press release below from our friends at Beamish Museum.

Beamish Georgians gather for Cross Country Rail Trip

Tyne Valley Community Rail Partnership’s 175th Anniversary Celebrations of Newcastle-Carlisle line
Tuesday, 18th June 2013

Beamish staff and volunteers will be donning their Georgian costumes for the 175th anniversary celebrations of the opening of the Newcastle to Carlisle railway line, the oldest coast to coast passenger line in the UK.  The festivities have been organised by the Tyne Valley Community Rail Partnership.

On Tuesday, 18th June, the Georgian folk will be helping to engage commuters in the story of the line, its historical importance and, of course, to make them aware of its birthday celebration!

Celebrations will start with a performance by Hexham Brass, from 10am to 11am, in the concourse of Newcastle Central Station.   Then the quack doctor, the Lady of the Manor, their Georgian entourage, and Hexham Brass will take the 11.22 train to Carlisle.  Commuters will be able to find out more about the history of the line and what life was like in 1838.

On arrival at Carlisle station, passengers will be treated to another performance by Hexham Brass from 1pm to 2pm, with a chance to meet with the Georgian travellers, before they return to Newcastle on the 14.36 train.

In the evening, a Cold Collation, or buffet, for invited guests will be held at Stocksfield Village Hall.  This recreates the occasion that was held for the opening of the line 175 years ago.  Guests will also hear about the history, present situation and future of the passenger line.

John Gillott, Partnership Officer for the Tyne Valley Community Rail Partnership, said “We are delighted to celebrate the 175th Anniversary of the completion, in 1838, of the railway line between the great cities of Newcastle upon Tyne and Carlisle.  The railway opened in parts from 1836, construction starting in 1830 and was the first coast to coast route in the world.”

Beamish will also be helping to spread the word about another important North East railway anniversary on the day, with the upcoming Puffing Billy Celebrations taking place at Wylam and Newburn in September and at Beamish during October half term.  Geraldine Straker, Community Engagement Co-ordinator at Beamish, said “This is a wonderful opportunity to recognise two very special rail-themed anniversaries that show how the North East was at the forefront of railway development in the 19th century.”

The Puffing Billy activities are part of the Beamish’s ‘Celebrating Community Heritage’ project which is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.  Using money raised through the National Lottery, the HLF sustains and transforms a wide range of heritage for present and future generations to take part in, learn from and enjoy.  From museums, parks and historic places to archaeology, natural environment and cultural traditions, HLF invests in every part of our diverse heritage.  HLF has supported 33,000 projects, allocating £5 billion across the UK.  Website – http://www.hlf.org.uk

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Media contact :- Geraldine Straker, Community Engagement Co-ordinator at Beamish, tel. 0191 370 4060,
email geraldinestraker@beamish.org.uk.

Issued 12th June 2013

Note to picture desks – There will be exciting photo opportunities with the band and costumed staff and volunteers at Newcastle Central Station at 10am and Carlisle Station at 1pm.