Autumn Steam Up


The return of the steam to the events calendar this autumn, after the massive success of the Spring Steam Gala, which is now one of the definitive Steam Galas in the Heritage Calendar. This year, we return to the Autumn Gala but with a twist!

You’ll be able to ride behind the locomotives over the two days, with intensive passenger service running on the railway. Across the traction-packed days, there’ll be a goods train demonstration, special double-headed trains, and even a visiting locomotive, perhaps a type that we wouldn’t usually have for our Spring Steam Gala.

Further details will be announced, including confirmed home fleet & Guest Locomotives.


As steam drew close, British Railways made one last attempt to improve its steam fleet. In 1961 ‘Bahamas’ was chosen by BR for its very last experiment; the culmination of steam power development started with ‘Rocket’ in the 19th century.

Rather than being sent for scrap, however, the loco remained at the back of the shed until purchased by the Stockport (Bahamas) Locomotive Society in mid-1967. The engine then moved to the Hunslet Engine Company in Leeds for overhaul and was restored to service in LMS Crimson Lake Livery.

When steam was allowed back onto the mainline by British Rail, ‘Bahamas’ was one of the selected few engines to grace the new steam scene and, between 1972 and 1994, operated many rail tours across the national network. Retired from mainline duty, the engine ran on preserved lines until its boiler certificate expired when the locomotive was committed to Oxenhope Exhibition shed as a static exhibit.

Work progressed to the point that on the 28th of September, 2018, a fully restored and resplendent 45596 steamed at Tyseley. Returning to Ingrow early in 2019, ‘Bahamas’ made its mainline debut on the 9th of February, hauling a sell-out commemorative special from Oxenhope to Carlisle, its first mainline outing since 1994. The feat was repeated a week later on the 16th of February, their success raising hopes of future Oxenhope – Carlisle excursions, followed by participation in the Spring Steam Gala in March. On the 29th of March 2019, a special rededication ceremony took place at Ingrow West to officially relaunch ‘Bahamas’ back into traffic. Later in the year, ‘Bahamas’ was operating on the mainline around the Midlands.

Purchased by two pioneering members of the KWVR directly from British Railways, it arrived on the Worth Valley, where it was painted maroon and, along with USA Tank No. 30072, double-headed the “Re-opening Special” in June 1968.

This locomotive class was designed by H.G. lvatt in 1946 for the London Midland & Scottish Railway. lvatt had been very impressed with American locomotive designs used in this country during the Second World War, especially with labour-saving devices such as grease lubrication of the engine’s motion and a rocking grate in the firebox. This latter feature, for example, meant the crews did not have to use a long-handled shovel to “paddle out” the fire. He also designed the engines with repair and maintenance in mind, making most of the motion and pipework easily accessible to crew and fitters.

41241 arrived at Keighley under its own power in 1967 in good running order, having been in storage at Skipton shed since its earlier withdrawal from service. It is perhaps the most typical original branch line engine on the KWVR, making it an ideal motive power for the railway.

When the engine arrived on the Worth Valley it was painted maroon and, along with USA Tank No. 30072, double-headed the “Re-opening Special” on 29th June 1968. Resplendent in its distinctive red livery, 41241 wrote itself into Worth Valley folklore on the Re-opening Special. Although coming to the end of steam on the national network, operating ex-BR locomotives in BR livery was forbidden. The choice of livery decided upon was the non-authentic, but appropriate crimson, reflecting its LMS lineage.

41241 became a regular sight over the coming months and years, carrying the same in-house red livery. Passing into KWVR ownership, in the early ’70s, 41241 was a stalwart performer culminating in 1975 with its last outing onto the mainline, from Keighley to Shildon, Co. Durham for Stockton and Darlington 125 celebrations.

This engine became subject to one of the earliest private locomotive purchase schemes established in the country and was one of the earliest arrivals on the nascent KWVR. It was bought outright initially by Mr Tony Cox and kept at Retford, Nottinghamshire. When Mr Cox became secretary of the nascent Keighley & Worth Valley Railway in the West Riding of Yorkshire, he brought the engine to the Worth Valley, arriving in March 1965, three years before opening. Affectionately known as ‘The Green Dragon’ in ‘The Railway Children’ film, 957.

The engine has a long list of film and television credits and is probably best known for its appearance in the 1970 feature film ‘The Railway Children’ when, in green livery, it gained the unofficial name of the ‘Green Dragon’. The engine has also featured in BBC’s ‘Born and Bred’ and the remake of ‘The Hound of the Baskervilles’.

Having been the show star in 1970, it wasn’t long before its age took its toll, and it was taken out of traffic in 1975. It remained sidelined until a bequest came to the locomotive’s rescue. Now owned by the Bowers 957 Trust, the locomotive returned to full working order in 2001 following an overhaul costing £150,000. On withdrawal at the expiration of its boiler certificate, 957 was put aside at Oxenhope in 2012. In 2016, the locomotive was moved to Haworth and overhauled in time for the 51st anniversary of The Railway Children in 2021.

The locomotive will appear at the Steam Gala in British Railways Black livery as 52044.

The Standard Four Locomotive Society rescued 75078, the 21st departure from Barry Scrap Yard. 75078 arrived on the KWVR in June 1972, and restoration was completed in 1977 and operates today after successive overhauls, the last completed in October 2022.

After the nationalisation of Britain’s railways (from 1st January 1948), there were several exchange trails of locomotives from the LMS, LNER, GWR, and Southern Railway over each of the former company’s lines which led to the development of several new classes of locomotives. The classes were intended for medium-sized passenger, and freight turns with the advantage of low axle loading allowing the widest possible route availability. The Standard 4 class 4-6-0 had the edge over the 2-6-4T design thanks to the extra coal and water capacity it could carry. It also proved popular amongst footplate crews.

Completed in 1956, 75078 is one of a class of 80 engines built to a standard British Railways design and is from a batch supplied to the Southern Region. As this region did not have any water troughs, it is attached to a tender with a larger capacity for water and coal than others of its class. In addition, it is fitted with a double blast pipe and chimney for better power outputs with more economic returns in coal and water consumption.

Without the outbreak of war 1054 (then LMS no. 7799) would have been visiting the breakers as it was withdrawn from service on the day before war was declared. With a need for motive power, 7799 was restored to service and lasted for another 19 years. When eventually withdrawn, the locomotive was bought privately before passing to the National Trust and eventually handed to the Bahamas Locomotive Society for safekeeping.

Built for service in the Welsh Valleys north of Cardiff, no. 85 was deemed surplus to requirements at the time of the grouping in 1923 and was withdrawn by the Great Western Railway in 1927. In 1929, now numbered 426, it made the long journey north to the Durham coalfields, where it remained in service, as NCB no. 52, until 1968.

Salvation came in 1970 when 85 was bought by the KWVR and brought to Haworth for a new life on passenger services.

Encouraged by the progress made with the rebuild of 75078, the Standard 4 Locomotive Society returned to Barry in 1975, purchasing 78022, a locomotive ideally suited to the Worth Valley branch. It was offloaded at Haworth on the 11th of June 1975 and laid aside to await the day when restoration would begin, although it was another 18 years before this locomotive was restored to running order.

After laying untouched in Haworth Yard, 78022 was eventually the recipient of an extensive restoration from Barry condition, completed in 1993; the locomotive proved popular with footplate crews capable of handling five coach services on off-peak turns of duty.

Having languished at Oxenhope since withdrawal in 2003, 78022 came to the head of the overhaul queue in 2015 and was moved to Haworth, where stripping commenced to determine the required work. That work has been thorough, and this useful locomotive returned to service in November 2018 in a lined-out BR green livery.


The Working Timetables will be available to preview closer to the event and will also be available in ”On The Day Booklet’ for valid ticket holders.

Across the Gala weekend, you will encounter the excitement and nostalgia of the Locomotive works, with its exclusive sounds and smells; get up close to our fleet of Steam and Diesel locomotives with knowledgeable commentary from your experienced guide.

The tour involves walking on uneven and slippery surfaces and includes steps. For this reason, it is not suitable for those with mobility problems. Regretfully, open-toed shoes are not permitted.  Access to the sheds is only allowed for authorised groups who must always remain together.

Please be aware that this is both a hazardous and a working environment; children under 16, therefore, MUST be accompanied by a responsible adult. Due to yard restrictions and operating requirements, tours may have to be curtailed or cancelled without notice.

Tours start from Haworth Station Booking Hall, and a Tour Guide will gather the group outside the station before walking to the Yard; approximate tour start times are 10:00, 10:45, 11:40, 12:30, 13:30 & 14:20.

Haworth Shed Tours will begin shortly after the arrival of each service from Keighley, meeting inside at the Booking Hall, Haworth.
Tickets for the tour cost £5.00 and can be booked online below.

Experience the Railway from the back Guards Van on the Goods Train.

The Brake Van Ride is returning to the Steam Gala, and you’ll get a picture-perfect view of the railway. You’ll journey in the 56287 Southern Railway Goods Brake Van ‘Queen Marys’ owned by The Bahamas Locomotive Society.

Full-Line Returntbc
Damems Returntbc

Keep fuelled up across the Steam-Filled Weekend!

Oxenhope Station Tea Room

In 1982 the Keighley & Worth Valley Railway invested in an atmospheric tearoom. You can now enjoy lunch and refreshment breaks throughout the day seated in a railway carriage that used to speed along Britain’s mainline railway network. Besides top-quality tea, coffee, and other soft drinks, the tearoom offers sandwiches, pies, cakes and biscuits!

8.00 am – 6.00 pm

Keighley Station Buffet

If you don’t have time to visit the Old Parcels Office, the Buffet is also open whenever passenger trains run. Positioned on the platform, the buffet is an old W. H. Smith bookstall; you can buy hot and cold drinks, snacks, sandwiches and sweets.

8.00 am – 6.00 pm

oakworth tea hut

Sit a while and enjoy a nice cup of tea outside the historic station’s Tea Hut and explore the Goods Yard or the trains passing through the station. Enjoy the spirit of a true country station and the open spaces of the Worth Valley, as well as top-quality teas, Ice-Cream, snacks & confectionary.

8.00 am – 6.00 pm

on train bars

The Keighley & Worth Valley is unique because most of our trains convey a real-ale buffet car, serving real-ale from traditional hand pumps. The buffet car also serves tea, coffee and a wide selection of soft drinks & snacks – but it’s the real-ale that is the real treat for our passengers.


Fares will be confirmed soon.

Please note that this gala will not have reserved seating whether you buy online or on the day (except for coach parties).  All customers will need to choose their seat once they have boarded the train or speak to staff if you have any queries.

Standard Booking Ts & Cs apply.

  • Members’ Free tickets are withdrawn.
  • Heritage Railway Association passes and free travel for reciprocal organisations cannot be used as normal – Member-priced tickets are charged.
  • Local Residents Railcards discount is amended – the member price is charged on the day.
  • Break of Journey on Single / Return tickets is not permitted, except that Full Line Return ticket holders may only break their journey at Haworth.
  • Carer / Wheelchair user discounts are available as normal.
  • Other promotions/discounts are not available.
  • Complimentary ticket vouchers are not valid unless they are printed as being issued for the gala itself.

Car parks are available at five of the KWVR stations, and for the benefit of satellite navigation system users, the KWVR station addresses & postcodes are:

  • KEIGHLEY – Keighley Railway Station, Station Bridge, Keighley, BD21 4HP
  • INGROW – Ingrow Railway Station, South Street, Ingrow, Keighley, BD21 5AX
  • OAKWORTH – Oakworth Railway Station, Station Road, Oakworth, Keighley, BD22 0DZ
  • HAWORTH – The Railway Station, Station Road, Haworth, Keighley, BD22 8NJ
  • OXENHOPE – Oxenhope Railway Station, Station Road, Oxenhope, Keighley, BD22 9LB

You can find more information about getting the railway in the dedicated travel section.

The Railway is pleased to welcome all dogs and their owners onto our Steam Gala Trains, subject to their owners ensuring that their dogs do not cause a distraction to the operation of the train or inconvenience and difficulties to fellow passengers. In addition, dogs are not allowed onto carriage seats.

In the opinion of the Station Master or Guard, if a dog is not in the control of its owner and is causing problems, the Station Master or Guard may, at their discretion, request the dog be taken away from the Railway’s premises or removed from the train at the next available station or be cared for by its owner in a more appropriate area away from other passengers.

However, dogs are NOT allowed in carriages where food is served, for example.