AN iconic Yorkshire Dales railway has won more than £300,000 in Lottery funding to boost its heritage attractions and help secure its future.

The Wensleydale Railway has received a National Lottery Heritage Fund grant of £368,000 for an ambitious project which will see the restoration of the Victorian station building, delivery of an education and community engagement programme and provision of heritage-themed activities at Leeming Bar Station.

The project focuses on restoring the station house to how it would have looked in the 1920s, telling the story of the Wensleydale Railway from its creation in 1848 to the present day.

Supported through the Heritage Fund, the project will secure the Grade II listed building for future generations and reconnect the local community to their railway.

A wide range of heritage-based activities will be delivered, where the public can discover and experience life at a busy country station in the inter-war period.

Wensleydale Railway Association Trust Chairman Ken Monkman said: “We are thrilled to have received this support, thanks to National Lottery players and we are confident that the project will provide a fantastic resource for the Wensleydale Railway and the communities it serves as well as being a fitting gateway to the line and the Yorkshire Dales.”

David Renwick, head of the Heritage Fund for the region, said: “This is a really exciting development for the history of steam travel in Yorkshire, and we are delighted to see Wensleydale Railway get its National Lottery funding.

"The restoration of Leeming Bar Station back to its 1920s heyday will be a valuable addition to the visitor offer in North Yorkshire – and we look forward to the immersive experience it promises.”

The Wensleydale Railway starts in Northallerton and runs up to Redmire on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales National Park, passing through Bedale and Leyburn.

Leeming Bar Station dates from 1848, when the line was first built, but passenger services ended in 1954 and freight shortly after.

Threatened with demolition in the 1960s, the station was designated as Grade II listed, which protected it from destruction, but currently much of the building is out of use with no public access.