Railway society in Milton Keynes marks 90th anniversary

Stirling 'Single' No 1
Stirling 'Single' No 1

Members of a railway society in Milton Keynes are celebrating the 90th anniversary of its founding.

Members of the city branch of the Railway Correspondence and Travel Society (RCTS) are marking the 90th Anniversary of the charitable organisation.

It began in 1928 when a small group of railway enthusiasts set up the society in Cheltenham Spa.

It quickly became a national organisation with local branches spread throughout the country. A plaque, to commemorate the founding of The Society in 1928, was unveiled at Cheltenham Spa railway station earlier this year.

The Milton Keynes branch is still thriving, one of 30 spread throughout the country, attracting people with an interest in railways from all walks of life and of all ages, enhancing the enjoyment of a common interest.

One of the highlights of the branch is the regular indoor meetings, normally held at The Methodist Church, Silver Street, Stony Stratford, MK11 1JS, where guest speaker audio-visual presentations, including from railway professionals, cover a wide range of railway subjects, often of specific local interest. Meetings are open to everybody and a warm welcome awaits new attendees.

The society produces, for members, a highly acclaimed monthly magazine both in hard copy and digital format. The Railway Observer, widely known as simply the ‘RO’, contains a wealth of railway interest, including branch news from around the country, current railway news and observations, members’ travels, publication reviews and an excellent selection of top quality photographs.

Outdoor visits to places of railway interest are always popular and are organised whenever possible.

This year is also the 80th anniversary of the first RCTS rail tour on September 11, 1938. The already then preserved, Stirling ‘Single’ No 1, was briefly restored to service to haul the train, and is today housed at the National Railway Museum in York.

As part of the 90th year celebrations, until October 31, the society is offering free membership for 2018. Full details about this and the RCTS in general are available at www.rcts.org.uk

The local Milton Keynes branch contact is Mark Richards, email miltonkeynes@rcts.org.uk