The first train trip of 2023 was to South Yorkshire, and the former mining village of Kiveton Park (the “ive” is pronounced like “river”) in South Yorkshire, nestled in between Worksop and Rotherham.
It was a cold but sunny start to the day as I caught the direct train from Burton on Trent to Sheffield, then changed to a Northern Trains service towards Lincoln Central. I arrived at Kiveton Park station at 11am.
EDIT 16/1/2023 – I forgot to mention that Kiveton Park railway station has the honour of being the 100th railway station in the UK which I have been to in my life. I should have brought a cake with me.
The original Kiveton Park station was built in 1849, to the east of the level crossing. It was relocated in 1884, when the old stationmaster’s house was built, which still stands today as a private residence. An old signal box can still be seen next to the level crossing. There is a small car park and waiting shelters on both platforms. The station was rebuilt once again in the early 1990s.
I crossed over the level crossing and over a small bridge to the entrance to the Chesterfield Canal, part of which I walked when I went to Worksop and Retford last year. I was ill-prepared for the amount of mud on the canal towpath, having decided to wear my trainers instead of more suitable boots. Ah well, they were due a clean anyway.
The canal comes to an abrupt end, but the path carries on through an even muddier field to the main road. I chanced upon some horses having their brunch while I was on the path, trying not to fall into the mud.
Across the road, at the end of the path, was Kiveton Waters, a fishing area with an on-site café and facilities for anglers. Unfortunately, I left my fishing tackle in the shop, so I wasn’t able to join in with the fun. I walked past Kiveton Waters to Kiveton Park Community Woodland, a vast new woodland with many footpaths, some of which weren’t muddy. (Most of them were).
Within the woodland are a couple of sculptures and stones, including a memorial stone to miners who died at the colliery over the years, a group of stones with carvings on them, and a silhouette of a pit pony pulling a wagon of coal.
The community woodland was started almost twenty years ago on the site of the old colliery, which closed in 1994 and lay derelict for a decade. The old pit baths were demolished, but the old colliery offices with its distinctive clock tower remains, and is now a community centre with sports facilities used by the local community.
I had planned to head west to Wales for a bit of an explore (the village of Wales, not the principality of Wales), but time was running out, and the weather was starting to take a turn for the worse. So, after a quick stop off at the Co-op, I headed for Kiveton Bridge railway station.
Kiveton Bridge railway station was opened in July 1929 after residents of the village complained that the neighbouring stations (The now-closed Waleswood and Kiveton Park) were too far away from the centre of the village. Like its neighbour down the road, Kiveton Bridge station was rebuilt in the early 1990s and briefly accidentally renamed “Kiverton Bridge” on the signs until they were replaced in 1993 with the correct spelling.
The station has waiting shelters on both platforms, help points, a ticket machine, access ramps from street level and a rickety old footbridge. The former station house and booking office remains, but is now privately owned.
I caught the train back to Sheffield, then took one to Derby, and then changed there to get back to good old Burton on Trent. It was a good day out, and I do recommend a walk around Kiveton Park community woodland. Although I also recommend wearing proper footwear, and not trainers.
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