Community y Rail Walk on Wednesday, September 26th starting from Blackburn Sta at 11.09 – 8 miles easy. See relevant page for details
The RMT Union have announced three further strike days on Northern for Saturdays October 6th, 13th and 20th two of which coincide with Rail Ramblers
The Rail Rambler to Edale on Saturday, September 22nd is cancelled due to strike action on Northern
A new Community Rail Walks’ Programme has been produced by the Community Rail Partnership listing guided walks from October to next March. The walks are led by our leaders. Here is the link:
This Sunday should see the commencement of the Ribble Valley Rambler service from Preston to Hellifield with a good connection to stations up to Carlisle and return. The National Rail Journey Planner shows that the return service has been retimed to later in the afternoon giving an opportunity for longer walks from stations in the Dales. We haven’t as yet drawn up a walks’ programme in case the service suffers from regular cancellations as did DalesRail. The timetable can be found on the Ribble Valley Rambler Walks’ Programme Page of this website but please check if the train is running before setting out to the station to catch it.
Please note that the Community Rail Walk on Saturday, September 15th is cancelled as there is a strike on Northern on that day with no trains to Bromley Cross.
No, this is not a mirage but an actual group of walkers on a Community Rail Walk from Rishton to Whalley yesterday. We have had so many cancellations and bus replacement of trains that it is some time since a walk actually took place. Here the group are climbing to Top o’th Heights above Rishton.
The group take a rest in Dean Clough with Pendle Hill as a backdrop.
Our next walk is a Community Rail Walk on Tuesday, September 4th – a six miles easy walk starting from Rishton Station and ending at Whalley. See the relevant website page for further details.
We urge any regular DalesRail passengers to write an email of complaint about the regular cancellation of the service to David Brown, Northern’s CEO at firstname.lastname@example.org
Please note that, sadly, the remaining DalesRail services have been cancelled making the 2018 season the worst in the 43 year history of the Lancashire service. Suffice to say that action is being taken to address the issues involved and, hopefully, these will be sorted out in time for next year’s DalesRail season.
Twenty two supporters joined last Saturday’s Rail Rambler to Todmorden and Littleborough and had perfect walking weather for their walks along the Pennine edges on the Pennine Way. The members of the E party were rewarded with great views of a Lancaster bomber flying low overhead on its way to the Blackpool Air Show.
More photos on Gallery Page
Additional information relating to the Rail Replacement Bus for Sunday’s DalesRail:
The bus will depart Blackburn at 09.55 calling at the nearest bus stop to R&W Sta and Langho plus calling at Whalley before arriving at Clitheroe Interchange at approx 10.20. The train will depart Hellifield at 11.05. On the return the bus will leave Hellifield at 19.45 calling at Clitheroe at 20.15 and then intermediate stations to Blackburn then express to Preston & Blackpool
Here are the arrangements for this Sunday’s DalesRail:
We hope to see a good turnout for the Rail Rambler to Littleborough this coming Saturday(11th) after a period of so many disrupted and cancelled services. Our walks are along the Pennine edges with great views in all directions. Passengers travelling from Preston and Bamber Bridge please note that it is cheaper to book a return to Blackburn and another return from there to Littleborough.
Today’s DalesRail service ran without any problems though the weather was awful. Let’s hope all goes well with the rest of the DalesRail Programme
Community Rail Walk this coming Saturday (28th) starting at Darwen and following paths to Roddlesworth, Brinscall, Withnell and returning from Pleasington – see relevant page for details.
Despite reassurances, the DalesRail service was cancelled again this morning. We are sure that regular DalesRailers and other intending passengers are very frustrated by the ongoing problems with the reliability of this service.
We have received a communication confirming that the DalesRail service should run tomorrow as timetabled. There will be a connecting bus to Swaledale.
The coming week is a busy one for walking opportunties with DalesRail tomorrow (8th), a Community Rail Walk on Wednesday 11th and our monthly Rail Rambler on Saturday 14th which visits Bronte Country from Hebden Bridge and the weather is perfect so no excuses for not getting out and about!
DalesRail Gallery 2018 Page now added
Please note that there are some printers’ errors in the DalesRail programme for Sunday, June 24th as follows: No E Walk and the D/E Walk should read Alight & return Garsdale. Otherwise all other walk details are correct.
GM Wayfarer prices rose in May so that English Bus Pass Holders now pay £8.50 and others pay £13.50
Another busy walking weekend coming up with a Community Rail Walk on Saturday from Rose Grove to Clitheroe (see relevant page for details) and DalesRail on Sunday.
Last weekend was a busy one for our supporters with a Rail Rambler trip to the Furness Peninsula on Saturday and DalesRail on Sunday. The weather was perfect for walking though some of us were soaked in a short deluge near Kirkby Stephen.
Members of the D Party heading across the sands from Piel Island to Walney Island
Join us on our trip to the Furness Peninsula this Saturday, June 9th with our popular island hopping walk from Piel Island to Walney Island preceded by the caost path and ferry from Roa Island to Piel Island. For those who like something more strenuous there is also longer walk from Dalton. See relevant page for full details.
The DalesRail season finally got underway but not without a hiccup in that the return srvice was cancelled. However, with advanced knowledge, we were able to organise connecting buses at Settle from the preceding Leeds’ train. The weather for walking was perfect and everybody enjoyed the day..
D Party members heading down Crummackdale
DalesRail cancelled today – not an auspicious start to the season to say the least. Let’s hope that reliability improves quickly to restore confidence.
Community Rail Walk on Tuesday, May 22nd – an easy 7 miles starting from Brierfield. See relevant page for details.
Some good news however! Northern have introduced a new Ranger Ticket called a Northern Explorer 55 West Day Ranger available to those aged 55 and over (Proof of age required). Valid after 09.30 on weekdays and any time at weekends and Bank Holidays on Northern trains only, it covers Lancashire, Liverpool, Cumbria and into parts of Cheshire and Derbyshire. This ticket will be useful for Rail Ramblers to the Cumbrian Coast and some other destinations. Here is a link to the map showing the area covered:
The seventeen people who managed to join today’s Rail Rambler to Greenfield despite the disruption enjoyed perfect walking weather and glorious scenery in the hills around Saddleworth.
Amended Walks’ Programme & Future Destinations Updates on Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme Page
Please note: There aren’t any trains to Victoria from Preston this coming Saturday. Please see the Rail Rambler Programme Page for alternative travel arrangements.
Perfect conditions for a country walk today and a very good turnout of Rail Ramblers to enjoy our two walks from Disley. Our next walk is on Tuesday when a seven miles’ route will be followed from Entwistle to Ramsbottom via Holcombe Moor and Peel Tower. Full details on the relevant page.
The weather is looking perfect for this coming Saturday’s Rail Rambler to Disley – see relevant page for details. The Preston to Manchester rail route via Bolton is open as normal too.
The full DalesRail guided walks’ programme, timetable and fares are now available at http://www.dalesrail.com
Join our Community Rail Walk this coming Saturday, April 14th – a 10 miles’ moderate walk starting at Colne and following parts of the Bronte Way through Wycollar – see relevant page for details. Catch te 09.05 train from Preston calling at all stations to Colne.
This Saturday’s (7th) Rail Rambler explores the high countryside and reservoirs to the east of Rochdale starting from New Hey. For full details visit the Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme page.
Community Rail Walk this Wednesday -an 8 miles’ easy walk from Entwistle – see relevant page for details
Fancy a walk this Easter then why not join our Ribble Valley Rambler Walk on Sunday, April 1st – a seven miles’ easy walk from Settle led by Hilary Bell. See relevant page for details.
Those who joined today’s Community Rail Walk from Burnley Central to Brierfield enjoyed a pleasant, calm spring day with lots of interest and good company along the way. More photos on Gallery Page
The 2018 DalesRail timetable is now on-line at http://www.dalesrail.com
The sixteen people who joined yesterday’s walks to and from Milnthorpe enjoyed a mixture of sun and snow showers – much better than was forecasted.
Our next walking trip is the Rail Rambler to Carnforth and Milnthorpe with walks over Warton Crag and to Hawes Water and the Fairy Steps. Hopefully the daffodils will be in full bloom in this Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Come and join us. See the relevant page for details.
Apologies to those who wanted to join today’s Community Rail Walk which couldn’t take place because the train was cancelled at Blackburn.
Today’s RVR train was cancelled due to the weather. 2017/18 has been the most disrupted Rail Rambler season ever with strikes, cancellations and now severe weather taking their toll. However,we have a Community Rail Walk on Tuesday, March 6th which, hopefully, will take place – see relevant page for details.
Ribble Valley Rambler Walk – Sunday, March 4th
Please check on the Northern or Ribble Valley Rail websites on Sunday morning to see if the Ribble Valley Rambler train to Hellifield is running. Hopefully, conditions are now improving though there aren’t any trains to from Leeds to Carlisle at present. N.B. If the train to Hellifield is cancelled the walk will also be cancelled.
The 2018 Dalerail Walks’ Programme is now published at dalesrail.com
Whilst the Rail Rambler to New Mills on March 3rd is cancelled due to industrial action on Northern, the Ribble Valley Rambler Walk on Sunday, March 4th will go go ahead as planned. Details of the walk can be found on the relevant page of this website.
Another fine day and a chance to get some exercise and fresh air on today’s Community Rail Walk. Here is the party at Nick o’Pendle
Thanks to all who made a special effort to join us on today’s walk along the Sefton Coast despite the disruption to train services. Nineteen people joined our two walks and after a grey start we were blessed with a gloriously sunny day.
Join us on February 21st for an eight miles’ moderate walk starting at Whalley – see relevant page for details
Our walks’ programmes are currently suffering from the vagaries of the weather, which seem to conspire to produce atrocious weather at weekends, and the ongoing electrification works between Euxton Junction and Salford which will close the line at weekends for some months ahead. As a result our supporters are finding it difficult to join us and we ask for their forbearance and hope that they can come along on walks where possible, even if it means using a car or bus to the nearest railhead or walk starting point. Our next walks on the Sefton Coast aren’t the easiest to reach by rail in normal circumstances. Trains are running from Wigan Wallgate to Southport and there is a connection from Preston by train to Wigan North Western and a short walk across to Wallgate Sta. and there is also a service bus from Preston to Southport. See relevant page for details.
Today’s Ribble Valley Rambler Walk went ahead despite the snow showers and biting wind and five intrepid people turned up. We used a relatively new section of the Pennine Bridleway for the first time. This crosses the Ribble on a new footbridge.
Join us on our Ribble Valley Rambler Walk this Sunday (11th) when we follow a 7.5 miles’ circular route from Horton in Ribblesdale. See relevant page for full details.
The ongoing weekend electrification works between Euxton Jct and Salford Crescent will continue until March 25th thus affecting travel arrangements for some of our forthcoming Rail Ramblers and Community Rail Walks so please check here before joining them. Please note: The Community Rail Walk on Feb 10th is cancelled but the Ribble Valley Rambler Walk on Feb 11th will take place.
Please note the following changes to travel arrangements for this coming Saturday’s Rail Rambler to Marple. The changes are due to the railway between Euxton Jct and Salford Crescent being closed for electrification work. Here are departure times to connect with our 09.49 train from Piccadilly to Marple. Preston dep 08.09, Blackburn 07.18, Accrington 07.27, Burnley M/c Rd 07.38. Passengers joining at Blackburn ,Accrinton & Burnley will have to walk from Victoria to Piccadilly. Passengers from Bromley Cross, Chorley and Bolton will have Rail Replacement buses so please check times on the National Rail website.
Just a reminder that we have a Rail Rambler this coming Saturday, January 20th with two walks from Carnforth to Lancaster and the weather forecast is looking good. Come along and join our friendly supporters. See the relevant page for details.
Seventeen people joined the Ribble Valley Rambler Walk last Sunday and , despite the gloomy but dry conditions, enjoyed the circular walk from Settle via the Ebbing & Flowing Well, Giggleswick Scar and Langcliffe. More photos on the new Ribble Valley Rambler Gallery Page
Join us on the next Ribble Valley Rambler Walk on Sunday, January 14th. The 7 miles’ moderately easy walk begins at Settle and heads out via Giggleswick to the Ebbing & Flowing Well and over Giggleswick Scar. Full details on the relevant webpage.
Happy smiling faces at Hebden Bridge Station last Saturday for the first Rail Rambler of 2018. We were blessed with clear, sunny weather and distant views. More photos in Rail Rambler Gallery.
Community Rail Walk – Tuesday, Jan 9th see relevant page for details
Only six hardy souls joined yesterday’s Community Rail Walk from Bamber Bridge in the face of Storm Eleanor but the day was largely fine and the wind behind the party. The weather’s looking good for Saturday’s Rail Rambler to Hebden Bridge – sunny but cold.., so get well wrapped up and get out and join us.
Ready for some fresh air, exercise and friendly conversation? Then join us on tomorrow’s Community Rail Walk starting from Bamber Bridge Station at 10.20 or come along and enjoy the traditional start of our walking year at Hebden Bridge on Saturday, January 6th. All welcome! See relevant pages for details. N.B. There are no trains running to/from Bolton on Saturday and a Rail Replacement Bus Service is in operation.
January 1st, 2018
A happy New Year to all !
Our first walk of 2018 will take place on Wednesday, January 3rd when an 8 miles’ easy walk start from Bamber Bridge Station at 10.21 following the arrival of trains from Preston and Colne.The walk will finish at Pleasington. See the relevant page for details.
We extend Season’s Greetings to all our supporters, friends and website visitors
Join us on our last walk of 2017 on Wednesday, December 20th – a Community Rail Walk statring from Ramsgreave & Wilpshire Station at 10.58. This 9.5 mile moderate walk explores field paths through Wilpshire and Whalley – see relevant page for details.
Another good turnout of walkers for our last Rail Rambler of 2017 with two walks which followed routes out from Wigan. Members of the E party were surprised to suddenly emerge from the quiet wooded landscapes of the Haigh Plantations and Douglas Valley into the hustle and bustle of Wigan town centre. Meanwhile the C Party headed out across country from Wigan to Chorley.
Forget the Christmas shopping and stress and enjoy a day’s walking with us this Saturday in Wigan’s surprising countryside. Not far to travel and fine weather arranged so no excuses. Meet outside Wigan North Western Station at 10.05. For full details of travel and walks see the relevant page.
Both parties meet outside Wigan North Western before heading out to discover Wigan’s countryside
Join us this Saturday, December 8th for a Community Rail Walk starting from Bamber Bridge Station at 10.20 after the arrival of trains from Colne and Preston. This 8 miles’ easy walk ends in Preston’s Avenham Park after exploring the local countryside. A chance to avoid Christmas shopping crowds. See relevant page for full details.
Twenty one people turned out for today’s Rail Rambler to Alderley Edge with rather murky conditions but not too bad underfoot. We were pleased to have three members of the Rail Rambles group with us. They are based in the Welsh Marches. This group was originally founded by Alan Howard when he retired to Shrewsbury. Alan, together with Howard Hammersley, also established Lancashire Rail Ramblers back in 1975. Below are members of our E Party on Alderley Edge.
Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme for 2018 now added – see relevant page
At last the weather is drying up and, hopefully, the ground too and the prospects for the weekend are good so no excuses for not joining us on our Rail Rambler to Alderley Edge this Saturday, December 2nd. We hope to welcome some members of Wales Rail who organise rail based rambles around Shrewsbury. Full details of walks and times on the relevant page.
Despite a dreadful weather forecast and a delayed train, six people joined today’s walk from Gisburn over Weets Hill to Barnoldswick and had a bit of sunshine and no rain so,perhaps, the lesson of this is to ignore the forecast and get out into the fresh air.
Rail Rambler to Garstang this Saturday for walks in the countryside towards the Bowland Fells – see relevant page for full details
Thirteen people joined our Community Rail Walk from Accrington to Burnley via the old railway and Hameldon Hill. The weather was perfect for walking with distant views.
Community Rail Walk this Saturday(11th) starting from Accrington Sta at 10.03 – 9 miles moderate – see relevant page for further details.
Twenty three people joined our Rail Rambler walks at Chinley and enjoyed great weather and scenery.
Two days of walking with Rail Ramblers this coming weekend. Saturday sees a Rail Rambler to Chinley and two walks on offer whilst Sunday has the Ribble Valley Rambler with a walk from Hellifield to Settle. See relevant pages for full details.
The next walk in our programmes is on Wednesday, November 1st when a Community Rail Walk will start from Ramsgreave & Wilpshire Station. See the relevant page for details.
Please note: The Community Rail Walk on Tuesday, October 3rd is cancelled due the rail strike on Northern trains
Yesterday’s Community Rail Walk paid a visit to the Meccano Bridge at Nob End near Bolton on their tour of the town’s green spaces
Community Rail Walk this Wednesday is an exploration of Bolton’s green spaces some of which will surprise you – see the relevant page for details.
After quite a long gap in our programme, this coming Saturday (23rd) sees the beginning of our fortnightly Rail Rambler trips. This Saturday’s trip offers the scenic journey up the Cumbrian Coast as far as Millom. Both walks start from Green Road with the shorter walk following the coast round to Hodbarrow Point whilst the longer walk takes in the summit of Black Combe – see the relevant page for full details.
The Ribble Valley Rambler Walks’ Programme is now available on the relevant page.These walks are from the Sunday service from Preston to Hellifield which connects with the train to/from Carlisle.
The weather forecast for Sunday is looking good despite earlier suggestions of hurricane remnants and rain so why not join a DalesRail walk -see dalesRail.com for details
What a difference a day makes. These two photos were taken last Saturday and Sunday. The top one shows members of the D Party at Chunal Moor above Glossop on a day of heavy showers which gave way to a sunny afternoon and the bottom photo is of the DalesRail D Party near Garsdale on Sunday which was a gloriously sunny summer’s day.
Our Community Rail Walks are proving popular this year with a dozen or more people joining each one. Our next walk is tomorrow from Clitheroe -see relevant page for details plus more photos in the Community Rail Walk Gallery
It was with great sadness that we learnt of the death of Bob Sanderson last weekend. Bob was a founder member of Lancashire Rail Ramblers back in 1975 and was a regular and reliable leader of our A walks for many years. In his latter years he would travel up from his home in Silsden to board the DalesRail train at Hellifield in order to meet his friends from Lancashire. We shall miss Bob’s quiet, unassuming presence and his wry sense of humour. Skipton Crematorium was filled with his many walking friends and fellow leaders for yesterday’s funeral.
Of interest to all walkers: https://www.ukhillwalking.com/articles/page.php?id=8437
A great day for a Community Rail Walk. Yes, this view is of Darwen from the golf course
Hope you can join us on this Saturday’s Rail Rambler to the moors above Sowerby Bridge for a summer’s walk in the South Pennines – see the relevant page for full details.
Community Rail Walk this Wednesday, July 12th – an eight mile circular from /to Darwen – see relevant page for details
Just a reminder that there won’t be a DalesRail train this Sunday as there is industrial action. DalesRail will be back on the 16th.
A rather damp and drizzly day didn’t stop seventeen people joining our Community Rail Walk from Ramsgreave & Wilpshire Station to Whalley via Wilpshire Golf Course, Gt Harwood and Whalley Nab
Community Rail Walk this Tuesday, July 4th – a 6.5 mile walk from Ramsgreave & Wilpshire to Whalley – see webpage for details
Stop Press: The RMT Union has called a strike for July 8th & 9th so DalesRail won’t run unless the the strike is called off. Watch this space for further updates.
Just a reminder that DalesRail isn’t running on June 25th and July 2nd. It will run on Sunday, June 9th and the walks will be as advertised for June 25th with a bus to Alston and Nenthead. See relevant pages for details of Community Rail Walk on July 4th and Rail Rambler on July 15th.
More photos added to Gallery pages
This weekend offers two days of great walking with a very interesting Community Rail Walk on Saturday and four DalesRail walks on Sunday – no excuse for not getting out in the fresh air ! Fine weather forecasted too.
Rail Rambler to Windermere on Saturday, June 10th – see relevant page for details
Community Rail Walk this Wednesday – June 7th starting at Clitheroe – see relevant page for details.
After a delayed start yesterday’s Dalesrail train eventually reached Carlisle and passengers had to catch a bus from Clitheroe onwards to Settle for the midday train to Carlisle though some went back via Preston and arrived in Carlisle only thirty minutes later than by DalesRail. The C Walk went ahead, the Town Tour at Carlisle was also completed and other walkers managed to have a good day in fine weather.
One group of regulars enjoyed a walk from Horton to Settle despite the earlier delays
The broad acres of Swaledale were the destination for many of last Sunday’s DalesRailers with a full coach taking them on the scenic ride via Hawes and The Buttertubs Pass to Reeth. More photos in the DalesRail 2017 Gallery
The DalesRail season got off to a positive start with a reasonable turnout and fine weather. This Sunday’s (May 28th) has a coach link to Swaledale with guided walks. For those who don’t want to catch the caoch an alternative D Walk starts from Kirkby Stephen Sta. For details of timetable, fares and walks visit http://www.dalesrail.com
Members of the D Party head out over Smardale Fell on the Coast to Coast Path
GM Wayfarer ticket prices have been increased to £13 and also £8 for those who hold an English Bus Pass. This latter rise is rather cynical as it excludes non-English residents from using the ticket at the reduced price and also many older people over 60 years of age. So much for encouraging use of local public transport.
This year’s DalesRail season commences this Sunday, May 21st with a full programme of guided walks – see dalesrail.com for details of timetable, fares and walks.
Thirteen people joined the Four Parks and a Funeral Walk through some of Blackburn’s parks and countryside which included a visit to the grave of Blackburn’s Giant. Who was he? Visit the Commnity Rail Gallery for more.
Join us on Saturday, May 13th for an exploration of some of Blackburn’s countryside and parks on a walk called, ‘Four Parks & A Funeral’. The nine miles’ moderately easy walk commences from Blackburn Station at 10.04 and will visit Griffin, Witton, Roe Lee and Corporation Parks as well as the old cemetery where an unusual grave will be visited. Lots of pleasant countryside and interesting history along the way.
View from Revidge Tank visited on the walk
Seventeen people joined yesterday’s walks in Airedale enjoying the countryside above Bingley and Keighley. Some photos on the Gallery Page
Special fare offer from Northern is with us again. Collect two tokens from local papers of the Johnston Press e.g. Lancs Evening Post, Burnley Express, Chorley Guardian, Nelson Leader, Clitheroe Advertiser and exchange them for £10 tickets for a day to any destination on Northern Trains only. Also can be exchanged for a £17.50 weekend ticket. See Northern website.
Sixteen people joined last Wednesday’s Community Rail Walk from Mellor Brook to Ramsgreave. The weather was perfect and the walk through the bluebells and garlic flowers and along the banks of the Ribble was full of interest. see Gallery for photos
Join us on Saturday,May 6th for our trip to Airedale with walks on the southern side of the dale which is less well known. Full details on the relevant page of this website. We shall arrive at Crossflatts at 10.55 and Keighley a few minutes later. For those living in Preston it may be cheaper and more convenient to travel by bus to Skipton and then by train from there. Check out the relevant timetables.
The next Community Rail Walk on May 3rd starts from Blackburn Station with a short bus ride to Mellor Brook for an 8 miles’ easy walk down to the River Ribble at Osbaldeston returning through the woods and up through Ramsgreave to the station.
The next Rail Rambler on April 22nd has Todmorden as a starting point. For many the tour of this quirky market town which was once on the Lancashire/Yorkshire border will be of interest. For others the opportunity to walk on the surrounding moors will be too good to miss. The choice is yours. See the relevant page for more details.
Destinations for 2018 added to Rail Rambler Programme Page
Thirteen people joined last Wednesday’s Community Rail Walk from Pleasington to Brinscall and enjoyed a walk of great variety passing through several small hamlets with a lunch stop at Withnell Fold before continuing to Johnsons Hillock Locks and over the tops to Brinscall. More photos on the Gallery Page.
Join us on Wednesday, April 5th for our next Community Rail Walk which commences from Pleasington Station at 10.17 after the arrival of trains from Colne and Preston. The 8.5 miles’ moderately easy walk follows the L eeds-Liverpool Canal as well as visiting the old hamlets of Brimmicroft, Ollerton and Withnell Fold brfore heading through Heapey and the pleasant countryside towards Brinscall where we catch the bus back to Cherry Tree or Blackburn. See the relevant page for more details.
A strike on Northern Trains is planned for Saturday, April 8th – the date of our next Rail Rambler so watch this space for further news as to whether our walks are cancelled.
Sixteen people were blessed with beautiful weather and long views on yesterday’s Rail Rambler to the Peak District making the trip a very enjoyable experience. Below. members of our D Party head across Stanage Edge
Weather’s looking good for Saturday’s Rail Rambler to the Peak Dstrict
Thirteen people enjoyed today’s exploration of Darwen’s parks and countryside – a route along which Darwen is hardly seen and which surprises with its hidden cloughs, folds and packhorse trails as well as excellent parks
If you can’t join us on Wednesday why not come along this Saturday(4th)for our Rail Rambler to the Peak District with two walks – the longer one starting from Hathersage and the shorter one starting from Grindleford. Both follow routes which take in some of the area’s best gritstone edges. Meet at Manchester Piccadilly in time to catch the 09.49 Sheffield train. For full details visit the relevant page on this website.
Join us on Wednesday, March 1st for our next Community Rail Walk when we have a circular walk around the edge of Darwen. This 8.5 mile walk takes in three of its beautiful and Listed parks as well as some surprising historic corners. See the relevant page of this website for full details.
Those who turned up for last Saturday’s Rail Rambler to Lancaster had a dry day despite the forecast and enjoyed varied walks through Lancaster’s hinterland. See Gallery for more photos
Lancaster is our next Rail Rambler destination this coming Saturday with the shorter walk taking in some of Lancaster’s best landmarks including its Roman Catholic Cathedral, Williamson Park and the Ashton Memorial plus the Lune Acqueduct. The longer walk explores the fell country behind the city and visits the excellent viewpoint at Jubilee Tower with its panoramic vista across the Lancashire Plain. Hope you can join us.
An early start for Rail Ramblers today but they were rewarded with gloriously sunny walks through the Cheshire countryside including Tatton Park
Here are details of train/bus connection to Manchester Piccadilly from Preston, Chorley & Bolton for Saturday’s Rail Rambler. Connections from Blackburn are as in the timetable. Thanks to Clive Burton for this information
Outward Saturday 04 Feb 2017
|Depart||Arrive||Travel By||Service Provider||Duration|
BOLTON to MANCHESTER PICCADILLY
Outward Saturday 04 Feb 2017
|Depart||Arrive||Travel By||Service Provider||Duration|
NB The Ribble Valley Rambler train will run as in the timetable . On Sunday the train to Blackburn is leaving Bolton at booked time so will connect with the Ribble Valley Rambler train.
It’s a bus at 0735 from Manchester Victoria to Bolton
Three walks this week for your delight. Wednesday has a Community Rail Walk starting at Langho Sta, whilst on Saturday we have a Rail Rambler to Knutsford and on Sunday it is the monthly Ribble Valley Rambler with a walk starting from Horton in Ribblesdale. See the relevant pages for information.
BUS REPLACEMENT FROM CHORLEY ON FEBRUARY 4TH CHECK TIMES OF BUS ON NATIONAL RAIL WEBSITE. TRAINS RUNNING FROM BOLTON TOWARDS MANCHESTER. FEB 5TH TRAIN RUNNING TO HELLIFIELD AS PER TIMETABLE
An excellent turnout at Hebden Bridge for our first Rail Rambler of the year though the weather was rather misty.
Our new Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme is now published. To print a copy visit the Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme Page and see the link to print it
We have been assured that the Ribble Valley Rambler train will run this Sunday and the guided walk will take place
A happy and healthy New Year to all with its prospect of lots of interesting walks and good fellowship. We start 2017 with a Community Rail Walk on the 4th followed by our traditional New Year visit to Hebden Bridge on the 7th. Hope you can join us in 2017
A very good turnout of twenty-one people for yesterday’s Rail Rambler walks and thanks to those who joined us. Our last walk of the year is this coming Wednesday when the Community Rail Walk follows another section of The Burnley Way from Hapton Station to Burnley via Hameldon Hill and Townley Park – a nine miles’ moderate route. The walk commences at 10.46. See relevant page for details.
Fed up of Christmas shopping, decorations etc and want some exercise and fresh air? Then why not join our last Rail Rambler of the year with walks starting from Chorley Railway Station and heading out into the pleasant countryside around Rivington and Anglezarke or on over Great Hill and Roddlesworth. See details on the relevant page
Community Rail Walk this Saturday,10th starting from Entwistle Station at 10.36 with an 11 mile moderate walk to Pleasington – see relevant page for details.
Trains are running again to Hellifield from this Sunday after weeks of bus replacement services.
Eighteen people joined our the two walks of our penultimate Rail Rambler of the year for an exploration of the countryside of West Lancashire around Parbold & Burscough
This Saturday’s Rail Rambler takes us to West Lancashire for walks on the ridge near Parbold or across the mosslands which we rarely visit. We haven’t far to travel and the weather forecast is for dry weather – an opportunity to get some fresh air and exercise before the arrival of Christmas.
Good turnouts from our supporters on the last Rail Rambler and Ribble Valley Walks and, hopefully, on this coming Saturday’s Rail Rambler to Macclesfield with walks over the Kerridge Ridge with its distant views across the Cheshire Plain and to the Welsh Hills. The weather forecast is promising.
Make the most of your walking opportunities in this beautiful autumn. We have walks aplenty to tempt you outdoors including a Rail Rambler to Delamere Forest on November 5th, Ribble Valley Rambler on November 6th and Community Rail Walk on November 12th. See relevant webpages for details.
More Rail Rambler destinations for 2017 added to Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme Page
Make the most of the beautiful autumnal weather and join our Community Rail Walk this Tuesday, October 25th -a 6.5 miles moderately easy walk taking in Stoodley Pike and the ridge above Todmorden. Walk commences from Todmorden Sta at 10.56 after the arrival of the train from Blackburn, Accrington, Rose Grove & Burnley M/c Rd.
After what seems an age, the next Rail Rambler takes place this coming Saturday with an opportunity to explore the Pennine town of Marsden and its connections to Last of the Summer Wine – with, perhaps, a poignant visit to Auntie Wainwright’s shop – and the famous Standedge Tunnels nearby. Also arranged is an eleven miles’ walk on the adjacent Pennines for those who want a more challenging walk. Full details on Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme Page.
Ten people joined the Community Rail Walk last Tuesday and enjoyed a beautiful day walking from Burnley Barracks Station following The Burnley Way towards Padiham and returning to Hapton Station. The current ELCRP Walks’ Programme has a number of walks along sections of The Burnley Way
Twelve people joined yesterday’s Ribble Valley Rambler Walk and had a great walk in glorious weather with ditant panoramic views.
Johnson Press Newspapapers are repeating the Northern Vouchers. Collect three to obtain reduced tickets for use on Northern trains
The first Ribble Valley Rambler Walk takes place this Sunday, October 2nd with a 6.5 miles moderately easy walk from/to Horton in Ribblesdale over Moughton and down to Dry Rigg Quarry where we will use the new footbridge over the recently installed rail siding then return to Horton via the rarely visited Foredale and on to the Ribble Way. DalesRail fares apply to this service. See the relevant page for train times.
Twenty four people joined our Rail Rambler to Piel Island yesterday but, unfortunately, didn’t reach it as the ferry wasn’t running due to the strong wind. Plan B was put into operation and we followed The Cistercian Way to Furness Abbey where some of the party returned to Barrow and the rest continued to Dalton in Furness.
NB Community Rail Walk this Wednesday, 28th, from Pleasington – see relevant page for details
Community Rail Walk on Wednesday, September 28th starting from Pleasington Station. A walk through the pastoral landscape west of Blackburn with a visit to an ancient hall – see relevant page for details.
The last DalesRail of the season has run and now we can look forward to the Rail Ramblers of autumn and winter starting with our trip to Piel Island on September 24th with its ferry journey from Roa Island and a walk across the sands to Walney Island. For details see the Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme Page but for a taster here are some photos from our last trip to Piel Island in September 2013
Last DalesRail of the summer this Sunday so come along and enjoy a day out in the Yorkshire Dales
The Ribble Valley Rambler Walks’ Programme details have now been added to the relevant page on this website. We hope that you will come along and enjoy some autumnal, winter & spring walking in the Yorkshire Dales using the train
Another enjoyable day’s walking on today’s DalesRail. For more photos see the DalesRail Gallery 2016 page
DalesRail returns to its normal timetable this Sunday i.e. running through from Blackpool North
Fourteen people joined our Harrogate Rail Rambler and enjoyed beautiful countryside, saw numerous Red Kites and perfect walking weather. More photos on the Gallery Page
NB Community Rail Walk this Saturday – August 20th
Join us this Saturday for a rare visit to Nidderdale and the countryside around Harrogate – see the Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme Page for details of times and walks
For the next two Sundays (14th & 21st) the DalesRail train will commence from Blackburn at its normal time with a connecting bus from Preston. The return train will run as normal to Blackpool North
Community Rail Walk this Saturday starting from Colne – see relevant page for details
DalesRail this Sunday (31st) has a coach link and walks in Wensleydale – see dalesrail.com for details
Join us on Sunday’s DalesRail for guided walks from Horton, Appleby and Garsdale plus a snail paced tour of Carlisle. See dalesrail.com for more details
Spot any familiar faces here?
On the way to Horton in September 2005
July 14th, 2016
Join us on Saturday, July 16th for our trip to The Wirral and an opportunity to walk out across the sands to Little Eye, Middle Eye and Hilbre Island – for details see the Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme Page
Community Rail Walk this Wednesday – see relevant page for details
More photos added in DalesRail and Community Rail Galleries
For a nostalgic film of the Settle-Carlisle taken in the mid 1960’s visit You Tube and type in ‘Film 5869’ and enjoy comparing the line back then and now. Ah – the good old days ??
More photos added to DalesRail Gallery 2016. Next Community Rail Walk – Wednesday, July 13th with a rare opportunity to visit Eagle Crag an impressive landmark above Cliviger Gorge – see relevant page
This Sunday’s DalesRail provides a rare opportunity to walk in the northern Lake District with a coach link from Appleby to the Ullswater area. Visit dalesrail.com for details of the guided walks on offer
Today’s Community Rail Walk – Four Parks & A Funeral turned into Two Parks and A Deluge as torrential rain fell as the party climbed Billinge Hill. After sheltering for some time it was decided to abandon the walk and try again next year. Twenty three people had joined us.
Just a reminder – Saturday, June 11th – Four Parks and Funeral- see Community Rail Walks’ Page for details
NB This Saturday’s D Walk at Buxton is 9 miles in length and not 11 as advertised.
More photos of yesterday’s walks now on the DalesRail Gallery Page
Northern are offering their £10 tickets to anywhere on their network after 08.45 weekdays and anytime weekends and are also offering a Sat/Sun two day ticket at £17.50. To qualify you have to collect two tokens from the usual newspapers including Clitheroe Advertiser, Nelson Leader, Colne Times, Burnley Express(Tues & Fri), Accrington Observer, Lancashire Evening Post, Blackpool Gazette, Chorley Guardian, Wigan Observer.
To those passengers using yesterday’s cancelled return DalesRail train you must contact Northern either by obtaining the relevant claim form from your nearest manned station or using the internet link as follows:
Don’t forget to claim delay repay – two free tickets for 2 hours delay (or refund of half return fare.) https://www.northernrailway.co.uk/…/cont…/61-claiy
Oh dear, oh dear! The first DalesRail of the summer got of to an inauspicious start when the return train was cancelled due to a lack of driver. A coach brought passengers down the line from Appleby but interventions from leaders at Settle, where forty passengers were waiting, managed to get an additional coach to collect them and they made a train connection at Clitheroe to Blackburn and beyond. Let’s hope things improve in the weeks ahead !!
During this year’s DalesRail season tickets can be used as Rangers i.e. they can be used to travel up and down the Settle-Carlisle Line between the furthest station booked to and Hellifield multiple times on the day of travel. Not a great offer considering the number of trains on a Sunday but an offer nonetheless.
Community Rail Walk on Saturday commencing from Blackburn – see relevant webpage for details
No need to remind you that Sunday sees the first DalesRail of the summer season. Visit DalesRail.com for details
Our next Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme is in preparation and details of next three Rail Ramblers are on the Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme Page
Please note changes to dates and destinations of future Rail Rambles. Also the B Walk at Windermere has been changed to a circuit of The Fairfield Horshoe due to bus timetable changes
Next Community Rail Walk – Tuesday, April 26th – an easy 5 miles from Mire Ash, Mellor to Ramsgreave & Wilpshire meeting at Blackburn Sta at 10.26 – see Community Rail Walks’ Page for details.
Photos of the Ribble Valley Ramble walk to the summit of Pen y Ghent led by Hilary Bell last Sunday. photos courtesy of Clive Burton
Community Rail Walk this Wednesday starting from Bromley Cross Sta at 10.29 after the arrival of the trains from Clitheroe and Bolton/Mcr. For details see the Community Rail Walks’ Programme Page
Ribble Valley Rambler walk this coming Sunday – an ascent of pen y Ghent led by Hilary Bell – see relevant web page for details
Next Community Rail Walk – Tuesday, April 6th. 9 miles moderate starting from Bromley Cross Station at 10.29 after the arrival of the trains from Clitheroe & Bolton. Return from Darwen. See Community Rail Walks’ Page for route details.
Members of the Rail Rambler Committee and partners celebrated Richard Gilbert’s recent 80th birthday with a short walk and lunch at the Calf’s Head, Worston today
Bus times for the Chipping Rail Rambler now on the Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme Page
Twenty two people joined the stroll around Stockport yesterday and were surprised by the town’s historic centre, imposing public buildings and collection of museums. Perhaps most striking of all was the complete art deco interior of The Plaza Cinema – a gem.
For more photos see the Rail Rambler Gallery Page
It was a busy weekend for our group as today was also a Ribble Valley Rambler with photos below courtesy of John Barnes,
Join Stuart and Aidan for an exploration of Stockport this Saturday March 5th- at least it won’t be muddy underfoot!! Meet at Manchester Piccadilly for the 09.49 train to Buxton, See Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme Page for details
Two rural bus services reprieved – see Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme Page on Saturday, March 26th for details
The awful weather is taking its toll on support for our walks with only eleven people turning out last Saturday. Fortunately, the rain was only light and the forecasted wind didn’t arrive. Let’s hope for better days soon. Appreciation must go to our leaders who not only have to turn up to lead on the day, whatever the conditions, but also have to do a recce. And thanks to all our supporters who brave the elements to enjoy a day out.
Twelve people joined yesterday’s Community Rail Walk from Church & Oswaldtwistle on a very pleasant sunny day with good views all around – see photos on the relevant Gallery Page. As ever, it proves that there is some good walking country around our towns
Join us on our next Rail Rambler to the Furness Peninsula on Saturday, February 6th. Two interesting walks in a beautiful area plus a scenic journey. See Rail Rambler Waks’ Programme Page for details
The 2016 DalesRail Timetable and Fares are published at dalesrail.com Walks’ programme to follow shortly.
Yesterdays Rail Ramblers had a dry and enjoyable day’s walking on the tops above Littleborough. See Gallery for photos from the E party’s walk courtesy of Clive Burton and John Barnes
NB Some changes to dates and future destinations in the summer programme – see ‘Future Destinations’ section of Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme. The reason for this is that we have been asked to organise an extra Community Rail Walk on Saturday, June 11th as part of the Queen’s 90 th birthday celebrations – though not sure if she will join us?
A happy, active and healthy New Year to all our supporters and ‘visitors’.
Only nineteen people braved a wet start to join us at Hebden Bridge. The rain soon cleared, the sun made a rare appearance and the day’s walking was enjoyed by all. See Gallery for photos.
We send our best wishes for a happy and enjoyable Christmas to all our supporters past and present. Hope to see you in 2016. Our first walk is on January 3rd from the Ribble Valley Rambler train service followed on the 6th with an East Lancs Community Rail Walk and on the 9th the first Rail Rambler of the new season. See the relevant pages of the website for details.
A printable version of the Jan to May 2016 Rail Rambler Programme is now available via this link to the East Lancs Community Rail Partnership website:
As you may have read/heard, Arriva (German State Railways) will be taking over the Northern franchise from April with a massive investment programme in new trains and enhancement of many services in the coming years. Also, First have retained their management of the Trans Pennine franchise. Read what it means for services in Lancashire and Cumbria by going to the following link:
Hebden Bridge walks added to Rail Rambler Programme page
An unfamiliar view of a familiar location for DalesRailers – Appleby town centre after Storm Desmond did its worst. (Photo courtesy of The Guardian). Only ten people braved the elements to join yesterday’s Rail Rambler from Altrincham but those that did had a largely dry day – just shows the nature of our climate!
Congratulations to long time Rail Rambler, Annie Davies and husband Geof on their recent marriage!!
Yesterday’s autumnal weather didn’t dampen the spirits of those who turned up for the Community Rail Walk from Todmorden and we were lucky to have more drier interludes than wet ones!
The next Community Rail Walk is on Wednesday, December 2nd In the Footsteps of Jessica Lofthouse– see relevant webpage for details
Yesterday’s Rail Rambler parties had their first taste of winter walking in the snow on the Saddleworth Moors. A glorious day for walking with bright sunshine and clear views. Here the D Party members head towards Sugar Loaf Hill above Uppermill. More photos in the Rail Rambler Gallery.
New dates and destinations for 2016 added to Rail Rambler Programme Page.
Hope to see a good turnout on Saturday at Greenfield with two excellent walks and fine weather forecast but the chance of a snow shower. Wrap up for winter!!
The next Rail Rambler – Edale – will be held this coming Saturday, November 7th – see the relevant page on this website for details.
Nine people turned up for yesterday’s Community Rail Walk from Todmorden on a murky day but a route full of interest. Will have to repeat it in summer
Twelve people joined today’s Ribble Valley Rambler walk from Ribblehead to Horton on a gloriously sunny and warm day -November? No, more like May! The next RV Rambler will take place on January 3rd.
Community Rail Walk on Wednesday, November 4th – see relevant page for full details
Times of connecting trains for the rest of the Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme are now listed under the relevant trip.
Fifteen people joined today’s Community Rail Walk from Accrington enjoying a walk in mild conditions on the tops above the town returning via the old railway from Baxenden.
Our next walk is on Sunday, November 1st using the Ribble Valley Rambler train to Ribblehead from where a six mile easy walk return to Horton in Ribblesdale. See the Ribble Valley Walks’ Programme Page for details.
September 27th 40th Anniversary Get Together
Over sixty people attended our event at Low Moor Club, Clitheroe after enjoying walks in the local countryside on a stunning autumnal day. lunch at the Club was followed by a slideshow of times past. More photos to follow on the Rail Rambler Archive Page
A new Community Rail Walks’ Programme is out now and becoming available in manned stations and other outlets or visit the website at communityrailancashire.co.uk and look on the ‘Walks’ page
Hope to see many of our supporters past and present at our 40th Anniversary celebration on Sunday at Clitheroe – see below for details.
Thirteen people joined today’s Community Rail Walk to follow The Wyre Way from Poulton to Rossall and returning to Blackpool along the promenade and enjoying beautiful autumnal weather. More photos on Community Rail Walks’ Gallery Page.
Ribble Valley Rambler Walks’ Programme details added to the relevant page
Twenty one people joined our Community Rail Walk at Darwen yesterday. A lovely walk in the countryside around Hoddlesden with glorious weather. Details of the next walk on the Community Walks’ Programme Page
Lancashire Rail Ramblers now have a Facebook page – please log on to it so that we can increase our readership
Most of our regular supporters are aware that we holding a special reunion on Sunday, September 27th at Low Moor Club, Clitheroe and we hope to see a large turnout of people who have enjoyed being part of our activities during the past 40 years. Some will be relative newcomers whilst others will be veterans but the pleasure and enjoyment of our days out across the years is what has given us great fellowship and lots of memories. We hope to see you on the 27th and details can be found on the handbill below. If you don’t want to walk just come along to the Club and meet there. Please let others know who may not see this information.
Names aren’t necessary
The DalesRail train will not run on Sunday, August 23rd due to engineering works at Blackburn
A film crew from the Department of Transport is expected to be at Clitheroe Station to meet our party on Wednesday’s Community Rail Walk as part of a film about Community Rail Partnerships. We hope as many of our supporters as possible can turn out for this walk – a nine miles’ walk to Whitewell. The walk will be in reverse to that advertised because of a change to the rail timetable due to the engineering works at Darwen.
Seventeen people joined today’s walks on the Cumbrian Coast. The E Party enjoyed a sunny day and time on the beach near Askam with views across the Duddon Estuary to Black Combe with its cloud capped summit – the destination of the C Party
New additions to Archive Page
Hope to see you on this coming Saturday’s Rail Rambler (11th July) up the Cumbrian Coast with walks up Black Combe and around Askam in Furness. See ‘Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme’ Page for details.
Twenty people turned today out to ‘Christen the Curve’. Despite a poor weather forecast the day was dry with warm afternoon sunshine. See Photo Gallery
The next Community Rail Walk will be a 6.5 miles’ easy wildflower walk led by Christine Pickles starting from Clitheroe Interchange and not Lytham as advertised. The walk commences at 10.16 following the arrival of the train from Blackburn. For the route go to the relevant page on this website.
June 1st 40th ANNIIVERSARY CELEBRATION
Please leave Sunday, September 27th free in your diary as we are arranging a get together on that date to celebrate our 4oth Anniversary. We are planning to have two short walks starting from either Clitheroe Interchange, following the arrival of the train from Blackburn/Manchester, or for those arriving by car, from Low Moor Club and these will be followed by lunch at the Club, a good natter and a slideshow. Hope to see you there. Please tell any former Rail Ramblers about this event as they may not see the publicity – all are invited. More details to follow in the near future.
The DalesRail train will not run on Sundays, July 19th & August 23rd due to a total closure of Blackburn Station for works associated with the redoubling of tracks in the Darwen area.
Some of the information in the printed paper copy of the Rail Rambler Programme relating to ‘Ticket Information’ is incorrect. Please see the information the ‘Rail Rambler Programme’ page of this website for the amendments.
Advanced Notice: For those joining the next Rail Rambler to Todmorden at Burnley Manchester Road & Accrington please book a Day Return to Hebden Bridge as this is a cheaper option than booking a Day Return to Todmorden due to a fare anomoly. The ticket to Hebden Bridge is valid for travel via Todmorden.
New timetables out covering Preston/Blackpool to Manchester and Clitheroe to Manchester during the period of Farnworth Tunnel work and redoubling of track at Darwen. See below for Glossop connection times from Preston & Blackpool
2016 destinations now listed along with walks at Todmorden on June 13th
Train times for May 9th to Glossop – see Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme Page
The 2015 DalesRail Timetable and Walks’ Programme is available to view and download on the communityraillancashire and dalesrail websites
Great walking weather, clear views and a good turnout for today’s walks in the Worth Valley with twenty four people joining our two parties. See Rail Rambler Photo Gallery
Our Easter Saturday Rail Rambler walks are in the Worth Valley – an excellent walking area covering the Bronte Moors and the Worth Valley Railway. See our Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme page for details.
Stuart Leese will be leading a two hour stroll around Appleby on Sunday, April 5th from the Ribble Valley Rambler train which leaves Blackpool North at 08.10 calling at Poulton 08.16, Kirkham 08.25, Preston 08.38, Lostock Hall 08.44, Bamber Bridge 08.47, Blackburn 09.04 then stations to Clitheroe 09.27 and on to Hellifield where the train connects with the Carlisle train. Have a scenic ride and a town tour.
Community Rail Walk – Wednesday, April 1st from Entwistle to Bromley Cross. For details see the Community Rail Walks’ Page.
Despite a lack of trains between Bolton & Manchester, twenty people made it to Piccadilly for yesterday’s walks. Both parties enjoyed their walks in spring sunshine.
Our next Rail Rambler will take place tomorrow with a chance to walk in classic Peak District scenery around Grindleford. A good day is forecast so no excuses!
Twenty one people turned out for our trip to Ulverston on a day of low cloud and a fierce wind which whipped up waves in the Leven Estuary. See photos in the Rail Rambler Gallery
Twenty four people turned out for yesterday’s walks in the Skipton area and enjoyed a beautiful, calm and often sunny day. The E party discovered countryside most had never visited before and were surprised by the variety of landscapes crossed.
Howard Hammersley’s funeral will take place on Tuesday, February 17th at 13.00 at Carelton Crematorium near Blackpool. The family have asked for donations in memory of Howard to be given to the Heartbeat charity which provides support to people with heart problems. Link to website for donations: https://www.justgiving.com/howardhammersley/
There is a walk from the Ribble Valley Rambler train on Sunday, February 1st starting from Hellifield and finishing in Settle for the return train. See our ‘Community Rail Walks Programme’ Page for further details. The walk is being led by Alan Holmes
January 22nd Howard Hammersley 1938 – 2015
It is with much sadness that we learnt of the death of Howard Hammersley who past away last Sunday after a short illness. Howard, together with the late Alan Howard, established Lancashire Rail Ramblers in 1975 in response to a request from British Rail to help them organise a series of ramblers’ excursion trains. So successful were the initial trips that the number of excursions grew each year and their popularity was such that most trains ran full. Howard gathered together a dedicated team of leaders who lead a very comprehensive programme of guided walks from each excursion. Many of those leaders still lead to the present time. Howard’s interest in local history and historical geography often saw him conducting town tours around the cities and towns at which the trains terminated. These destinations could be as far apart as Stirling and Swansea, Bath and Bangor.
All through the 1970’s and 80’s Howard was not only organising the twice monthly excursions, preparing handbills, researching information for his town tours, conducting recces, organising leaders but also holding down a managerial post with Baxi Ltd and helping to raise a family of five children.
When the excursion trains ceased to run at the end of the 1980’s Howard carried on organising Rail Rambler trips using local trains. Then in 1990/91 he was asked by Lancashire County Council to organise the walks’ programme for the summer Lancashire Dalesrail. Howard took on this task with relish ably supported by our committee members and other leaders. On most Sundays between Easter and October Howard would either be seated at the front of the train in his ‘office’ ensuring everything was going smoothly or walking down the train talking to passengers. He was still involved in Rail Rambler trips often leading historical talks on the walks he called ‘Past Landscapes’. Of these walks alone he had done eighty-three!
Why did Howard make such a commitment? Simply because he enjoyed doing it. He had become interested in railways and walking in his teenage years and the two naturally came together on days out with the Manchester RA. At university he studied historical geography which added to his range of interests. All these combined as he became involved with Rail Ramblers and he believed passionately in the importance and potential of public transport as a means to reach the countryside.
Howard had numerous interests. For many years he was a member of United Utilities Conservation, Access & Recreation Advisory Committee promoting the use of that company’s vast estates for recreation. He was a member of the Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway Society, Railway Performance Society, Chetham Society and Peak & Northern Footpath Society to name but some. Despite so much time spent in providing enjoyment for others he never sought publicity, awards or recognition. And countless thousands of people have enjoyed a day out in the countryside or historic town thanks to Howard’s hard work.
With the death of Howard Hammersley the community has lost a dedicated volunteer, Rail Ramblers a loyal and very good friend and the railway a committed and knowledgeable supporter. Hopefully, Howard’s legacy will live on as a testament to the idea that public transport and access to the countryside have the potential to be mutually beneficial in so many ways.
Two more items added on the ‘Rail Rambler Arhive’ Page. Hope you enjoy them.
Fifteen supporters turned out at Lancaster and were lucky to have a better day than was forecasted. We even had some winter sunshine.
The price of adult GM Wayfarer Tickets have increased to £12 but the over-60 Wayfarer is still £6
2015 will see disruption to services between Preston, Chorley, Bolton & Manchester on different dates in connection with the electrification of that route. Please check on this website as to the Travel Arrangements for each Rail Rambler Walk to ensure up to date information.
A happy and healthy New Year to you all !! Twenty-eight of us turned out t0-day for the first walks of 2015. A wet, misty morning gave way to drier and brighter conditions at lunchtime and everybody enjoyed the opportunity to stretch their legs and get some fresh air
December 21st, 2014
We wish all our supporters a relaxing and enjoyable Christmas and hope to see you all on January 3rd at Hebden Bridge for our first walks of the New Year
Our new Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme (Jan-May 2015) is available and can be downloaded. Visit the Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme Page
A great day for a walk – eleven of us joined Peter Walker on an 8 mile Clitheroe Circular. More winter walking at Grange on Saturday – why not join us!!
A pleasing turnout of twenty-four people joined our two walks at Parbold yesterday. After a misty start the sun came out and shone all day making for perfect walking though the overnight rain ensured mud was plentiful! Here, the E Party has reached the Leeds-Liverpool Canal near Parbold.
Just a note regarding this Saturday’s Rail Rambler to Parbold – Parbold lies within the Wayfarer ticket zone so it may be cheaper to use a Wayfarer Ticket than to book a Day Return from your starting point.
More items added to Archive Page
Eighteen people enjoyed Stuart Leese’s Leeds Lookabout yesterday as the mid-morning’s rain cleared after lunch. The party enjoyed looking at the city’s fine architecture, had a coffee stop at the City Varieties’ Theatre and a look inside at the famous auditorium and discovered the nooks and crannies of Leeds’ former port area amongst many interesting aspects of Yorkshire’s leading city. Thanks to Stuart for his work in preparing and leading this tour.
Photos courtesy of Clive Burton
Additional destinations for 2015 now added to the Programme – see the relevant page.
Don’t forget – this Saturday’s autumnal walks in Delamere Forest and surroundings – hope to see you!
A new page – Rail Rambler Archive – has been added to the website which may bring back happy memories of yesteryears. If you have, or know of others who have photos of Rail Ramblers then please let us know so that we can share them.
Twenty people joined our walks yesterday and enjoyed a good day. Whilst the weather was not as good as forecast it was much better than the last time we walked on Coombs Edge back in March.
Hope to see you on this Saturday’s Rail Rambler to the Buxton area. Seems a long time since the last outing but we are now back on our fortnightly programme.
Alas, the DalesRail season has concluded but those wishing to have a Sunday walk in the Dales can make use of the Ribble Valley Rambler service which runs from Blackpool North to Hellifield via Clitheroe and connects into the Leeds-Carlisle train. Lancashire Rail Ramblers have organised a 7.5 miles’ moderate walk on October 5th starting at Horton in Ribblesdale and taking in Moughton Scar and the rarely walked paths over Moughton Nab before descending to Helwith Bridge and back to Horton.
The last Community Rail Walk of the current season takes place this Saturday, September 20th – a 10 miles moderate walk commencing at Entwistle Station at 10.36 following the arrival of the trains from Manchester and Clitheroe. For details of the route see the Community Wals’ Page. A new Community Walks’ Programme will be out shortly and the next walk on that Programme will be on October 1st
Many of our regulars were missing to-day but we still managed to have fifteen people out for a very warm day’s walking in and around Edale. The E Party members were even entertained on the way home on the weekly ‘Folk Train’
Nineteen people joined our Rail Rambler walks at Marsden with good views and reasonable weather. Photos of the C walk on the Rail Rambler Gallery Page
DalesRail Gallery 2014 page now added
Train times for the Marsden trip have now been published – see the RR Programme Page. Also on same page is a printable copy of the June to December Rail Rambler Programme.
Over twenty people joined Howard Hammersley last Saturday when he led an exploration of Lancashire’s lost villages which were swallowed by Liverpool but retain their distinct identities within the city. Even the weather was kind to the party.
The 2014 DalesRail season begins this coming Sunday – May 18th and we hope to see both our regular Dalesrailers as well as new faces ready to enjoy a day in the Dales or in Carlisle. As the hawthorn is in bloom the journey up Ribblesdale will be a scenic delight in itself.
The next Rail Rambler Programme is in preparation and the walks for July and August can be found on the relevant page of this website.
We hope that you can join our next Rail Rambler walks which are on Saturday, April 26th and explore the fell country above Waddington in the Ribble Valley. The walks are described on the ‘Rail Rambler Walks’ Programme’ page.
Why not join Howard Hammersley on May 10th for one of his fascinating ‘Past Landscape Walks’. This one explores areas of Liverpool which were once villages in their own right but now swallowed up by the city but retain a village atmosphere.
Fourteen people joined our trip to Chapel en le Frith for what turned out to be wintry walking conditions on the tops with snow, hail and sleet showers whipped along by a fierce wind though with sunshine in between. All survived the experience!!
The next Community Rail Walks’ Programme should be available at stations and other outlets shortly. In the meantime, details of the next walk are on our Community Rail Walks’ Page as well as a link to a printable version for you to download.
Hope you can join us on our next Rail Rambler to the great walking area around Chapel en le Frith on March 22nd
Sixteen people enjoyed Stuart Leese’s ‘Rochdale Revealed’ Walk yesterday discovering its hidden corners as well as its more well known landmarks
A printable version of the 2014 DalesRail Programme can be downloaded by going to this address:
which is on the Community Rail Lancashire website.
Be warned that if you type in dalesrail.com into Google it will come up with an advert for Viagra as the link via Google has been hacked into. Alternatively type in communityraillancashire and you can go into the DalesRail website from there.
Despite the lousy weather of the past two months hardy Rail Ramblers battle on and even see the sun occasionally. Members of the C Party at Lantern Pike last Saturday