Chris Lloyd on Teesdale Tracks and Derailing Dukes

Wed 3 March 2021 / 18:00-19:00 GMT

Did you know that Barnard Castle used to have a train station? While the station itself has long been demolished, railway-related buildings around Montalbo and Harmire Road serve to remind residents of a time when travelling by train was truly the height of convenience for the town.

In 1861, exactly 40 years after the world’s first passenger train had run from Stockton to Darlington, Barnard Castle opened their very own landmark station. This addition of the railway triggered a major boost to the town’s development and expansion. It facilitated not only the movements of soldiers to the new Barracks of the Durham Militia in Barnard Castle, but also turned the town into a popular destination for day tourists who visited the Bowes Museum and the forest.

Soon, tall, ornamented Victorian town houses were built along Galgate and green spaces with trees and flower beds were planted to impress tourists and travellers arriving to town from the station. In addition, several station buildings, houses for railway workers and a range of guesthouses along the previously very residential Newgate were built during this period.

Join us for this online talk on Zoom and learn how Teesdale’s most powerful landowner went to dastardly lengths to prevent railway lines from penetrating his dale, yet when they came, they were the most extraordinary lines anywhere in the world.

Chris Lloyd is chief feature writer at The Northern Echo and the Darlington & Stockton Times where he writes about local history and local politics. He is a former North-East Journalist and has just published his tenth local history book, Secret Darlington. Frequently, he can be heard on local radio and occasionally seen on national programmes. His greatest claim to fame is that he is one of only four people who have been allowed on Michael Portillo’s Great British Railway Journeys twice! So who better to tell you all about the origin of the Dales railway lines?

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