In celebration of the home entertainment release of The Railway Children Return, the enchanting new sequel to one of the most beloved British family films of all time, we have a run-down of the stunning locations featured in the film.
BAFTA-winning Director Morgan Matthews takes us full steam ahead back to Yorkshire in The Railway Children Return, where the film was shot entirely on location to capture the region’s beautiful and enduring cultural heritage at the heart of The Railway Children franchise.
Keighley & Worth Valley Railway
A railway steeped in history, The Keighley & Worth Valley Railway is a 5-mile railway line that is situated in the heart of West Yorkshire. At the railway, you can expect to see heritage steam trains and diesel trains from the industrial landscapes of Keighley , running through rural locations such as Haworth on its way to Oxenhope.
The five-mile-long journey is a powerful symbol and beloved reminder of Yorkshire’s industrial heritage. In 2018, the railway celebrated its 50 years of operating, after being re-opened following its unfortunate closure in 1962, thanks to the help of the the many volunteers who dedicate their time to the railway as a labour of love.
The station was thrust into the limelight in 1970 when it was selected as Lionel Jeffries backdrop for The Railway Children; which prompted the line to also be commonly referred to as ‘The Railway Children Line’. Many iconic scenes throughout the first film highlight the beauty of along the line, showing particular attention to Mytholmes Tunnel and Oakworth Station. In The Railway Children Return, the iconic railway appears on the big screen once again as they revisit Yorkshire during World War II.
The Brontë Parsonage is a writers’ house museum situated in Haworth, West Yorkshire. The museum is the former Brontë family home that is maintained by the Brontë Society in honour of the Brontë sisters; Charlotte, Emily and Anne. As a writing place of some of their most famous novels, it is listed as Grade 1 on the National Heritage list for England. Fascinatingly, the Brontë Society is one of the oldest literary societies for the English language.
Many iconic scenes in The Railway Children and The Railway Children Return feature the picturesque landscapes at Oakworth with its Edwardian-style booking office. Oakworth station has been a multiple winner of the ‘Best Restored Station’ competition. When filming the original 1970s film, Keighley & Worth Valley Railway convinced the filmmakers to keep the name of Oakworth in the film which had big consequences for the railway, contributing toa surge in new passenger numbers.
Salts Mill in Saltaire is set in the UNESCO World Heritage Site. Built in 1853 by Sir Titus Salt, it has survived through the years and is now listed as a Grade 2 historic mill building. Alongside being a distinguished filming location for both films in the franchise, it is also home to one of the largest collections of David Hockney’s art and is a centre for local heritage with architectural and historical significance.