On Friday 31st May 2019, the Railway’s Patron, His Royal Highness The Duke of Kent visited the KWVR. The visit encompassed many of the Railway’s activities including meeting volunteers at the Bahamas Locomotive Society’s, Ingrow works, to inspect the recently restored to traffic Jubilee 45596, ‘Bahamas’, and Oxenhope, a journey in the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway ‘Club Car’ before enjoying a full line trip on the footplate of BR Standard 4, no. 75078.
Our young reporter, Joe Shaw, takes up the story. The locomotives taking part in the special day were Standard 4 No. 75078 which would haul the service train and LMS Jubilee Class No. 45596 ‘Bahamas’ ran to Ingrow where it was displayed ready for the Duke’s arrival, Bahamas then returned to Haworth later in the day, which gave the rare opportunity to see 75078 and 45596 double heading up the valley.
The Duke first arrived at Ingrow West, here he was presented to the volunteers at the Bahamas Locomotive Society who played a key part in the restoration of this iconic locomotive. They gave the Duke the opportunity to step on and take a look at the locomotives footplate. Prior to departing Ingrow, the Duke met some of the station staff on duty, before boarding the train to Keighley.
After visiting Ingrow West, the Duke boarded the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway ‘Club Car’, here he would enjoy a luxurious journey down the hill to Keighley. During this journey, light refreshments were served with the chance to meet and chat with the Railway’s President, Ann Cryer, Lord Mayor of Bradford, Councillor Doreen Lee, Chairmen Matthew Stroh and Nick Bennett and working members, some of whom had over 50 years service!
Upon arrival at Keighley station the Duke was greeted by some of the younger volunteers of the Railway, as well as a large crowd from the public who were ready to greet him.
After being given the appropriate protective clothing, the Duke was able to enjoy the next part of his visit from the footplate of 75078. He was able to join the driver and fireman for a full line trip from Keighley-Oxenhope.
At Oxenhope there was a large crowd of members of the public ready to greet him, as well as more of the railways long serving volunteers. After having the opportunity to meet with a large selection, the Duke left the railway after having a wonderful time with us and we hope to welcome him again in the future.