Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway shortlisted for prestigious national heritage award

Cumbria’s iconic heritage railway is one of just three nominees shortlisted for the ‘Morgan Award for Preservation’, which awards an HRA member organisation for an outstanding achievement in the restoration of carriages or rolling stock.


The awards are the most notable event of the year for heritage railway staff and with a record number of entries received this year, Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway have topped strong competition from across the UK for their incredible restoration of two historically significant Camping Coaches.


Originally built in 1917 as part of a World War One Ambulance Train, ‘Elmira’ and ‘Maid of Kent’ are the UK’s oldest Railway ‘Camping Coaches’ still in their original location – uniquely situated at the Ravenglass Railway since 1960.

The Railway undertook a huge labour of love to transform these historically significant vehicles into striking new visitor accommodation with many of the beautiful hand-crafted features still intact.


Stuart Ross, Manager at Ravenglass Railway Museum, says “The restoration of the Camping Coaches was a make or break project for them. Without the support of the National Lottery Heritage Fund the coaches faced a very uncertain future. To be nominated for this award is a great tribute to the team who undertook the work on the coaches, a task often made more difficult as all the work had to be undertaken on site at Ravenglass during the winter months.”


Rachel Bell, Head of Marketing and Development at the Railway, says “To be shortlisted in such a prestigious award is fantastic recognition for our passionate and skilled team who have ensured the survival of these important vehicles. They have such a rich and fascinating history that visitors can continue to experience, and we look forward to finding out the results in March.”


Staff from the Railway will gather at a special awards evening – hosted by British railway historian and TV presenter, Tim Dunn – on Saturday 19 March in Birmingham where the winners will be announced.



Notes to Editors:


For further information and media enquiries, please contact:

Holly Collins, Bespoke PR Cumbria Tourism – 07766 985993 / 01539 822 222 hcollins@cumbriatourism.org

  • The Railway Museum was awarded £250,000 from The National Lottery Heritage Fund to help fund this joint project.

About the National Lottery Heritage Fund: Using money raised by the National Lottery, we Inspire, lead and resource the UK’s heritage to create positive and lasting change for people and communities, now and in the future. www.heritagefund.org.uk.  Follow @HeritageFundUK on TwitterFacebook and Instagram and use #NationalLotteryHeritageFund   


About Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway:

Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway is a family-owned business operating a heritage, narrow gauge steam railway on the Western Coast of the Lake District. The railway is surrounded by stunning views and walks and is based in Ravenglass, the only coastal village in the Lake District National Park.