My father died in August, and my mother’s not been out much this year, so I treated her to a rail excursion from York to Saltburn, a charter to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the town. It was supposed to be steam hauled but Network Rail slapped a ban on steam power because of the recent hot dry weather so we were diesel powered. Ironically, the weather was cool and damp with occasional light rain, though she said it was the best day she’d had for a long time so the outing was successful. The tour incorporated a ride along the freight Boulby branch, part of the Saltburn to Whitby line that was closed to passengers in 1958. It was reopened in the seventies as far as Boulby to serve the potash mine, which is the second deepest mine in Europe, and we passed by Skinningrove where my dad’s grandmother came from.