16th May 2019 · “Railway Films of Cam Camwell”

Presenter: Ian McInnes

By way of something different the May meeting comprised of a showing of DVD material derived from 1950’s and 60’s filmed material taken by the late ‘Cam’ Camwell who specialised in recording scenes well off the beaten track. Opening footage, in colour, recalled two Scottish rail tours on the West Highland and Great North of Scotland Railways when early day preserved Scottish locomotives were used as centrepieces attractions.Interest was further extended as a trip to the Emerald Isle provided a fascinating insight into the delightful Cavan & Leitrim and Tralee & Dingle narrow gauge railways in the days preceding their inevitable closure. Celtic travels also extended into Welsh territory where much was to be seen of remote branch line activities in South Wales, featuring little used but interesting lines around Port Talbot, Pembroke, Cardigan and Carmarthen.Material from English counties began with a showing of activities in North Eastern regions where the North Sunderland Light Railway was first to be featured. Film of everyday scenes illustrating the intense industrial nature of the Tyneside/Teeside areas provided something to widen the interest, concentrating on activities around the docks at Blythe and the Lambton Colliery lines. Glimpses of the electrified Tyneside suburban were also to be seen as was rare footage taken in the Richmond and Masham localities.Interest from the Yorkshire Ridings was plentiful as detailed passages illustrated the long closed branch lines between Cawood and Selby, plus both the Easingwold and Derwent Valley Railways. Various rail tours around the West Riding told of long closed branches in the areas around Huddersfield, visiting the town and villages of Meltham, Kirk Burton, Rishworth and Stainland. A closing sequence showing Cam’s favourite surviving engines steaming together on the Keighley and Worth Valley was memorable and most appropriate.