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Branch chair Colleen presents the Pub of the Season Winter 2018/9 plaque to the staff at the Wuthering Heights, Stanbury, February 2019

Branch chair Colleen presents the Pub of the Season Winter 2018/9 plaque to Nicci and Darren at the Wuthering Heights, Stanbury, February 2019

The Keighley and Worth Valley Railway Buffet Bar

Keighley and Worth Valley RailwayKeighley and Craven CAMRA "Pub of the Season" for summer 2003 is the Keighley and Worth Valley Railway buffet bar. Since I first moved to Haworth 18 months ago I have enjoyed the daily view of the Locomotive Works from my flat. With reductions for local residents and old age pensioners, I have spent many happy hours riding on the railway, especially when the buffet car was operating. There is little to beat a good beer in a perfect environment as town and countryside roll past your window.

The current buffet car, referred to as the RMB (Restaurant Miniature Buffet), was built in 1960, purchased in a semi-derelict condition in 1983 and, following extensive renovation, went into service anew in 1985. The beers on offer generally range from 3.5-4.5% abv with the occasional strong ale. Beers from around the country often follow a railway theme, however, local micros are extensively supported on the bar. RMB Manager Mark Collinson especially praised Goose Eye Brewery and Eastwood & Sanders both of whom have ‘served them well’. Soft drinks, snacks and sandwiches are also available as well as a range of northern bottled beers, at the moment from Jennings and Daleside. The cask ales are racked at Oxenhope station, usually six beers at a time, and then placed on the train in stainless steel containers to serve the three handpumps.

A further buffet bar is in the process of conversion and later this year it will offer a range of real ales with the provision of a griddle which will allow the railway to offer hot food with your drink. The bar will certainly be in service for 18th and 19th October this year when Mark plans to hold a beer festival offering 40 beers over the weekend. As well as the two buffet bars it is intended to have bars in the railway exhibition sheds at Oxenhope and Ingrow as well as Keighley station and possibly the diesel linking Keighley and Ingrow. I am sure that CAMRA branches far and wide will give the event their full support.

Before that the buffet car will be available at weekends and on other timetabled dates, which can be obtained from the 24hr speaking timetable (01535 647777) or Haworth Station (01535 645214). The buffet bar supports Sunday lunch trains for special events such as Mothers Day and ‘Wine and Dine’ trains, which operate late into the evening six times a year. Furthermore, this summer the Jubilee Bar is to be especially put into service for use by CAMRA members. The event will be the presentation of the Pub of the Season (POTS) award for summer 2003 on Sunday 6th July the train departs from Keighley Station at 12am. I hope to see you all there to steam into summer and celebrate the best bar in a CAMRA branch area covering approximately 400 square miles.

I was in my 70's when my son nominated the buffet bar for its first POTS award and I am now in my 80's. I recently lost my travel pass, when alighting from the train in monsoon conditions, and I am very grateful to those members of the railway who delivered it to my door the next day. My senses may not always be what they were but my taste for quality real ale has never wavered. I hope that I don't have to wait until I'm 90 before the enthusiasm of Mark and his team of dedicated volunteers on the K&WVR is once again recognised by the presentation of this prestigious award.

Bob Halmshaw (18/6/03)

The Halmshaws'Three Generations of CAMRA members'.

The Halmshaws:

Claire on the left is Ray's daughter and Bob on the right is Ray's dad (Ray's dad wrote this article and presented the award).

Pub's on the right track

The following article is reproduced by kind permission of Keighley News:-

Bob Halmishaw with steam engine When you're all steamed up there's nothing more relaxing than sitting with a nice cool pint of beer. In such a situation real-ale drinkers know there's a place with a track record second to none. It's the award-winning buffet bar pulled by locomotives on the Keighley and Worth Valley Railway. No wonder the bar has received this summer's "pub of the season" award from the Keighley and Craven branch of the Campaign for Real Ale. CAMRA members went along to the buffet car last Sunday to present the award.

The bar, which specialises in beers by local breweries, was nominated by Haworth resident Bob Halmshaw. The buffet car, a regular feature on the Worth Valley steam trains, has appeared in CAMRA's Good Beer Guide for ten years.

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