Yorkshire's Magnificent Journey

Delivering our £10 million future vision

Yorkshire's Magnificent Journey is our £10 million project to ensure that future generations can continue to enjoy our 180 year old railway for decades to come. Over the past 5 years we’ve been busy delivering 7 unique initiatives. The project concludes in 2024 and you can find out more below about what we’ve already achieved and what’s still to come.

Bridge Renewals

We’ve replaced three crucial bridges along our railway to ensure that we can keep the trains running well into the future. The new bridges have replaced ones that were over 150 years old and starting to show their age. Find Out More

Fuss Free Access

We’ve made improvements to help ensure that our site is as accessible as possible for all to enjoy and feel included. This includes new specially adapted accessible carriages, enhanced signage and accessible maps. Find Out More

Carriage Stable

We have built a new £4 million carriage stable at Pickering to provide better care for our historic carriages. The new facility provides covered storage for up to 40 carriages and is making our work to care for and maintain the collection much easier. Find Out More

Goathland Learning & Interpretation

We are busy developing our learning programmes and have launched a fresh new programme of activities to engage young people with the railway. We have transformed the former pigeon van at Goathland into a new learning coach and have launched a new app. Find Out More

Volunteer Development

We have invested in volunteering including creating new volunteer opportunities across our departments and providing training and support to help volunteer development. We have also created the Outstation at Stape - a residential centre providing high quality volunteer accommodation. Find Out More


Our new apprenticeship scheme is helping young people gain the skills they need for a future in heritage railways. Our apprentices are working alongside our staff in engineering and lineside conservation. Find Out More

Lineside Conservation

Our lineside conservation project is helping to care for the land either side of our railway tracks. Our conservation work includes habitat surveys, practical conservation tasks and the creation of educational resources to help our visitors understand more about wildlife and conservation. Find Out More

Travelling on a steam-hauled train is a wonderful and enjoyable experience… or at least it should be!

For most of us, the adventure begins when we climb aboard. Yet for some people, the adventure isn’t quite so exciting, particularly for our less-able and/or wheelchair-bound passengers and anyone with special needs. Our current wheelchair accessible accommodation involves designated wheelchair bays located in one end of selected second class ‘open’ carriages. However, these vehicles do not have suitable doors wide enough to enable the direct loading of wheelchairs.

Each vehicle is positioned adjacent to a ‘Brake’ vehicle, which has a Guard’s compartment and an adjacent luggage area, which is provided with double doors. Once the wheelchair user is on board, they must navigate through the corridor gangway into the next carriage, then pass through a further doorway to gain access to the wheelchair accommodation.

Typically we are limited to two wheelchair users per train. There are times when disabled passengers have to to experience the indignity of being hidden away from the rest of the passengers, usually in the unheated and austere luggage area. Wheelchair users who are part of a larger family group can sometimes get separated because there is nowhere suitable for them to sit together.

We also need to improve the information we provide to enable visitors with special needs to plan their visit and know what to expect.

Creating a Solution – Fuss-free access

‘Fuss-free Access’ will mean that all of our carriage sets in service contains one vehicle that has been specially adapted to ease access for everyone with mobility problems and accommodate them with their friends and family.

In total, we will have five vehicles.

Each converted carriage will have a significant area (nearly half of the vehicle) that is fully accessible for wheelchair users, including an accessible toilet. Double doors will provide direct access, eliminating the need to fit through narrow, corridor gangways. The size of the space will also make group outings possible.

We are already making fantastic progress already have three accessible vehicles. The remaining two are due for completion in 2022.

We are busy consulting with professional bodies representing people with special needs and will improve the information we provide pre-visit. We will also train our staff to understand the needs of all our passengers and provide enhanced signage to help facilitate an easy journey.

We look forward to providing all our visitors with the same wonderful and enjoyable experience, whatever their needs.  

Your donation makes a vital difference to help our railway survive for future generations.