THE popularity of a steam train chartered to take passengers from Carlisle to York organised by the Settle Carlisle Railway Development Company is creating a demand for more steam specials.

The LMS Royal Scot steam train carried over 400 people to York for the first weekend of the Christmas Markets, taking in the scenic journey down the world-famous Settle-Carlisle line along the way.

As tickets sold out in days for the standard class, an extra carriage was added to meet the demand from people across Cumbria looking to enjoy a day out by steam train.

The 6115 Scot Guardsman steam engine picked up passengers at Appleby, Settle and Skipton along the route, taking in water at Hellifield.

The demand for charter steam trains from Carlisle, offering people in Cumbria, the Borders and North East a unique experience, has increased, and the Settle Carlisle Railway Development Company is now looking to run another steam-powered trip to Chester in the spring.

Settle-Carlisle Railway Development Company deputy chairman, John Moorhouse said: "We are amazed at the response from the public in Cumbria and North Yorkshire, looking for an opportunity to take a steam train journey from nearer home.

“It was wonderful to see so many children with their parents and grandparents on the train – for many it was their first journey by steam train and for others their first ever train journey.

"We hope it will inspire them and their families to join us on our scheduled Northern service.

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"The steam trains which run along our line are usually heading from the south to Carlisle, and our aim has been to give communities in Cumbria and North Yorkshire, living along the Settle Carlisle line an opportunity to enjoy the journey by steam from their home station.

"Once again we were able to secure the steam locomotive Class 7P Scots Guardsman for the journey, and from the messages we have received on social media and personally, our passengers had a great time – and want to join us again on a charter steam train setting off from Carlisle.

“We hope to organise a special steam train to Chester in spring, and an announcement will be made on our Facebook and Instagram pages when tickets will be available.”