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North York Moors Railway - Updated
North York Moors
Member Name: SusanLesley
North York Moors
Date: 17/01/01, updated on 31/07/01 (228 review reads)
Advantages: A beautiful journey
Disadvantages: None at all
Whether you’re a fan of Heartbeat or not the North York Moors Railway is well worth a visit. It runs from Pickering in the south to Grosmont in the north, via Goathland, which is transformed into Aidensfield in order to film Heartbeat. Just in case you’re unfamiliar with the place names here, this railway is situated almost on the north east coast of England, in Yorkshire.
The steam trains and carriages are the originals, which have been lovingly restored providing a treat for the enthusiast and the interested observer alike. There is a gift shop on Pickering Station selling all sorts of railway memorabilia.
Pickering was originally a Celtic town and dates back to the third century BC. The Motte and Bailey castle has Norman remnants and the church has medieval frescos and effigies. There is also the Beck Isle Museum of Rural Life, which depicts the Victorian era by showing typical shops of the time.
At the other end Grosmont is a typical little northern hillside village with the railway running straight through the middle of it. There are sheds here that house an exhibition of railway carriages and engines dating back to 1890.
Goathland, which is the stop before Grosmont, is the village where Heartbeat is filmed. The Goathland Hotel also known as the Aidensfield Arms looks just the same inside as it does on the television. I quite expected Claude Greengrass to come in and order a scotch! The only things they change for the benefit of the cameras are the modern optics and such like behind the bar. It appears smaller than it looks on TV, but apart from that it’s like stepping into Heartbeat.
I’m a fan of the series anyway, but for ages after our visit I was saying things like ‘I sat there, where PC Ventris just sat!’ I would love to be able to go and see them filming.
The village shops, post office and village green are instantly recognisable from the programme but don’t
go looking for the Police House as Goathland doesn’t actually have one! Those scenes are shot elsewhere in Yorkshire.
At the northern end of Goathland is the Mallyan Hotel, behind which is a steep, rough track leading down to Mallyan Spout, a 70 foot waterfall pouring over a mossy cliff. This is a quite a scramble taking about 20 minutes and remember what goes down has got to come back up at some point, but the views at the bottom are well worth the climb. The waterfall itself nestles in a little leafy glen and is very pretty, but to get a good view at the bottom you have to climb over some large boulders which are quite slippery due to the fact that they are constantly wet from the waterfall.
The scenery all along the route of the North York Moors Railway is spectacular and it’s a journey I would very much like to repeat one day.