South Tynedale Railway - HPA
heritage and conservation

South Tynedale Railway


Opened in 1983, South Tynedale Railway is a popular heritage and conservation attraction to the east of Carlisle, operating narrow gauge steam trains along a five mile stretch of track between Alston and Slaggyford.

HPA was appointed to undertake sensitive conservation work and expansion on heritage sites along the route. Lead architect, Andrew Walters was charged with preserving existing listed structures, rebuilding former structures in their original style and adding to the station facilities in a sympathetic and authentic manner that seamlessly blended with the existing environment.


Alston Station is a listed building, and so any additions or improvements had to comply with the appropriate regulations. HPA created a new café extension that reflected the style of the existing building, along with a new station canopy that was in keeping with the period architecture of the station. Behind the scenes, HPA worked with the project team to install a modern, environmentally friendly bio-mass boiler to heat all parts of the station, helping South Tynedale Railway Preservation Society to protect the future as well as the past.


At the other end of the line, the team was tasked with rebuilding a signal box in the same style as one that had previously existed on the site. HPA worked with the client, using archive images to build a replica of the old signal box and level crossing.

Slaggyford Station was also given an upgrade, refurbishing the historic waiting room and adding a new toilet block. The existing building was carefully dismantled and re-built using as many of the original fixtures and fittings as possible to preserve the authentic look and feel of the station facilities and keeping in with the heritage and conservation.


The operations of the South Tynedale Railway are only possible thanks to the dedicated work put in by the many volunteers. HPA refurbished the workshop building and added a viewing deck at the Heritage Engineering Workshop, so that visitors could see first-hand the painstaking work that goes on to keep the trains running and preserve this unique piece of railway history.

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