31 January 2012
Last updated at 17:23
The Severn Valley Railway, which today runs tourist steam trains from Bridgnorth in Shropshire to Kidderminster in Worcestershire, celebrated its 150th anniversary on Tuesday.
The railway was built between 1858 and 1862 and originally linked Hartlebury, near Droitwich in Worcestershire with Shrewsbury in Shropshire.
During the late 19th and early 20th Centuries the line was important for transporting freight as well as passengers. This tree, felled in the Wyre Forest was transported from Bewdley station in the late 1920s or early 1930s.
The Victoria Bridge over the River Severn was cast at Coalbrookdale in Shropshire. When it opened in 1862, it was the largest cast iron span in the world, David Postle from the Kidderminster Railway Museum said.
The railway was originally built with a single track, although a second line was added later on. To avoid a crash, a token was given to trains to give them permission to proceed. In the 1950s Arley station was run by joint station-masters husband and wife, Mr and Mrs Jones. She is seen offering the driver a token to travel on to Bewdley.
Stourport-on-Severn was an important station until it closed in 1970. Today the A451 Kidderminster to Stourport road runs over part of the former line and little remains of the Severn Valley Railway in the town.
The Severn Valley Railway closed as a commercial service from 1963-1970, although a preservation society opened a section of it as a steam heritage line from 1970.
Today the Severn Valley Railway attracts about 250,000 passengers a year. A number of events, including exhibitions and a Victorian weekend, are organised throughout the 150th anniversary year.