Retired teacher Richard Turton said he is finally ‘living the dream’ as a fireman on the popular heritage railway.
His relationship with the railway started in 1972, when he and his father started as volunteers on the fledgling NYMR, carrying out a wide range of jobs.
In 1975, he started working as a cleaner in the Motive Power Depot at Grosmont. Unfortunately, when he left school in the summer of ’76, work took over, closely followed by life, a wife and family, University and teacher training.
Mr Turton was born in Bridlington and moved to Flamborough when he was 17 (46 years ago).
He taught music for 30 years, the last 22 as a brass teacher for the East Riding Schools’ Music Service, teaching in Bridlington and throughout the East Riding, before retiring in 2018.
Towards the end of his career, Richard was able to take ‘phased retirement’ which enabled him to volunteer once again. Now, after three years of working and training (and some delay due to Covid restrictions), he has passed his fireman’s exams.
He said he is privileged to regularly fire locomotives hauling trains through Newtondale and the 18 miles of countryside between Pickering and Grosmont known as “Yorkshire’s Magnificent Journey”.
Mr Turton said: “My next goal is to pass the exams to fire on Network Rail so that I can fire trains on the final six miles from Grosmont to Whitby.
“The railway is very much open for business with Covid mitigation procedures in place and plenty of volunteers on hand to help people.”