Railway Paths

Larpool Viaduct, Whitby

Larpool ViaductLying just west of the town centre of Whitby, Larpool viaduct is possibly the most picturesque and iconic viaduct in Railway Paths’ portfolio. It consists of 5 million bricks, and is 915 feet long with the rail level reaching 120 ft high. It was completed in 1884 and crosses the river Esk as well as the operating railway into Whitby from Middlesborough. This track is also used by the steam trains from the North Yorkshire Moors Railway.

The viaduct is mentioned in Bram Stoker’s 1897 novel Dracula (Chap.6, Mina Murray’s Journal):

The little river, the Esk, runs through a deep valley, which broadens out as it comes near the harbour. A great viaduct runs across, with high piers, through which the view seems somehow further away than it really is.”

View from Larpool Viaduct

View from Larpool Viaduct, looking upstream towards Ruswarp. Reproduced from Yorkshire Nostalgia.

The railway over the viaduct was closed in 1965. In 2000 much of the line and the viaduct were reopened to the public as a cycling and walking route. In 2006-7 extensive restoration works were undertaken to ensure safety of the brickwork in some of the piers.

The route over the viaduct is on the Scarborough to Whitby railway path (also known as the Cinder Track), a 21 mile traffic-free walking and cycling route along the Yorkshire coast. It is part of NCN route 1 and the North Sea Cycle Route, a 6,000km route which runs all around the North Sea.

The Yorkshire Film Archive contains this interesting short film showing trains passing over and beneath the Larpool Viaduct in all its glory.  Please visit http://www.yorkshirefilmarchive.com/film/sentimental-journey-whitby-scarborough Larpool can be seen in the clips following 1:59 and 3:04.