Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Rules of the Rails

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Rules of the Rails

Article excerpt

The boss of Britain's most successful heritage steam railway has slammed forthcoming new EU safety rules as an expensive waste of cash.

Last year the North York Moors Railway, which runs from Pickering to Grosmont, with regular excursions into Whitby, attracted a record 305,000 passengers.

Philip Benham, NYMR general manager, said of plans for independent examinations, which are due to start in April: "We don't mind paying a fixed amount for inspections per year, but this could mean paying consultants up to pounds 1,000 a day.

"We are a large player in the heritage railway sector and will be able to absorb this cost. But it could be the death knell for other smaller railways."

At present, railways like the NYMR get safety inspections on work they have carried out on new rail lines, or developments, for free as they operate under the heritage banner.

The inspections have been traditionally carried out by HM Railway Inspectorate.

From April independent inspectors have to be used - and railway trusts fear an astronomical increase in fees. …

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