The North Yorkshire Moors Railway (NYMR) has introduced four accessible ‘fuss-free’ coaches – part of a long-term initiative to make it accessible to all.
It means NYMR trains will contain one coach that has been specially adapted for wheelchair users. The fuss-free coaches all have access ramps, accessible toilets and an accessible space to accommodate wheelchair users.
NYMR has also completed a full review of its access points and facilities, in order to bring in more changes.
Some significant upgrades include
- large print and braille menus and accessible route maps for Pickering Station
- installing fixed and portable hearing loops
- free travel for carers
- accessible parking spaces
- and additional signage at its stations.
The heritage railway has also updated its website, introducing new ‘access champions’, put its staff through access training and introduced downloadable station guides.
The accessible coaches have been adapted thanks to funding secured from the Yorkshire’s Magnificent Journey project.
Laura Strangeway, deputy CEO at NYMR, said: “This project is the start of an ongoing journey towards access for all at the NYMR.
“The introduction of our four new coaches means that now everyone can experience and enjoy the 24 miles of stunning scenery that our railway offers.
“We wouldn’t have been able to complete these important adjustments without the funding and support from key partnerships, and the hard work and dedication of our volunteers, staff and loyal NYMR visitors.”
Last year, the NYMR announced its involvement with ‘The North York Moors Accessibility Project’, an initiative to help the region’s tourism bounce back from the pandemic, funded by Visit England.
NYMR has also secured section 106 funding from the North York Moors National Park with the help of Visit England to equip the railway with a host of useful equipment – from portable hearing loops to large-handled cutlery, toilet raisers to magnifiers.