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A CD of original songs written to celebrate the lives of the men and women who built the Settle-Carlisle Railway in the 1870s has been released by well-known folk singer, Karin Grandal-Park.

Lives on the Line is part of Stories in Stone, a scheme of conservation and community projects concentrated on the Ingleborough area. The scheme was developed by the Ingleborough Dales Landscape Partnership, led by Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust (YDMT), and supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund.

Karin said: “Up until recently I’d lived for more than 20 years within a couple of miles of the Settle Carlisle Railway and during that time I travelled its length many times, never giving a thought to who built it or the complexities of building a railway line across such difficult terrain. I was more concerned with just getting from A to B. When Mike Harding suggested a song for me to sing called Alice White, I became fascinated with the lives of the navvies who built the line – their many hardships, their dependents, and the conditions in which they lived.”

Karin started classical voice training as a nine-year-old, when one of her school teachers suggested to her mum that she had a talent for singing. As a teenager she wanted to sing contemporary/popular songs and, with a special licence from the Education Board as it was then, she started singing solo in clubs throughout Lancashire. From the age of 17 she sang lead vocals in various bands, performing across the UK and Europe, as well as working in studios as a session singer. Around five years ago she fell in love with the stories, history and traditions associated with folk music. She has since performed at folk clubs and festivals across the UK, including a regular spot at the folk sessions at The Lion in Settle, as well as festivals in Spain, Portugal and Majorca.

Karin added: “I spent many hours researching the Settle Carlisle Railway and also what was happening in the 1870s: the politics, fashion, the working classes, the music they liked. This provided me with a wealth of knowledge and inspiration to write the six songs. In fact, there was such an abundance of information and stories that I decided to focus the collection of songs around the Ribblehead Viaduct, Blea Moor Tunnel and the Batty Green ‘shanty town’.”

Karin wrote and performed the songs, supported by Rebecca Clare Douglas (former Head of Strings at Giggleswick School), Allan Ideson and Mike Harding. The CD also features Karin’s version of Alice White, written by Alan Bell.

Don Gamble, YDMT’s Scheme Manager, said: “We’re delighted to support this superb collection of songs specially written to remember the lives of the hardy folk who lived, loved, worked and died at Ribblehead, building the extraordinary engineering feat that is the Settle Carlisle Railway. I’m sure that in time the songs will become part of the area’s folklore tradition, and I look forward to hearing them played live in the near future.”

The CD costs £5 (plus £2.50 p&p) and part of the proceeds will be donated to the Friends of the Settle-Carlisle Line. It is available from Karin’s website, the Friends of the Settle-Carlisle Line website and local outlets.

Stories in Stone is enabling people from all backgrounds and of all ages to learn about, enjoy and help manage the stunning limestone landscape around Ingleborough, both above and below ground. The programme is delivering a huge number of projects including restoring field barns and wildlife habitats, involving people in archaeological digs, digitising archives, providing a range of training opportunities, offering new learning opportunities for local school children, improving physical and intellectual access, and delivering events and activities.


(L-R) Allan Ideson, Karin Grandal-Park, Rebecca Clare Douglas and Mike Harding

About Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust:

Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust (YDMT) is a small charity doing big things to support the people, landscape and wildlife of the Dales.

To date the charity has helped to deliver inspiring projects worth around £28 million in the Yorkshire Dales and surrounding areas. These projects cover areas as diverse as countryside apprenticeships, supporting local communities, education and outreach, restoring woodlands and wildlife habitats, and improving access and understanding of this special place.

The Trust has recruited more than 50,000 supporters to date. Find out more at

Website │Twitter │Facebook │Instagram │YouTube

People and the DALES is a community outreach project which enables disadvantaged groups from urban areas to the south of the Yorkshire Dales to take part in a wide range of fun, active and thought provoking activities in the countryside with the aim of providing people with the knowledge, skills and confidence to return independently and improve health and well-being.

Since 2005, more than 10,000 people have had life changing opportunities to get out and about in the Dales and one of the groups benefiting has been the City of Sanctuary Maternity Stream from Leeds.

Find out more at

Stories in Stone

Stories in Stone is a four-year programme of community and heritage projects. It has been developed by the Ingleborough Dales Landscape Partnership with funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund. Thanks to National Lottery players, the programme will enable people from all backgrounds and of all ages to learn about, enjoy and help manage the stunning limestone landscape around Ingleborough, both above and below ground. It will include a wide range of projects and activities such as restoration of field barns, drystone walls and wildlife habitats. It will involve people in archaeological digs, digital archiving and collecting oral history. It can support local people and groups wanting to look after their local area, provide formal and informal training opportunities, offer new learning opportunities for local schoolchildren, and deliver events and activities to celebrate the local heritage. It will also improve physical and intellectual access to the area and its heritage features.

The Landscape Partnership is led by local charity Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust (YDMT). It also includes the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority, Yorkshire Wildlife Trust, Yorkshire Dales Landscape Research Trust, Natural England, Hanson UK and Tarmac Ltd. Landowners, farmers, educational establishments, parish and district councils, businesses and local history and community groups are also involved in developing and delivering the scheme.

Find out more at

National Lottery Heritage Fund

Thanks to National Lottery players, we invest money to help people across the UK explore, enjoy and protect the heritage they care about – from the archaeology under our feet to the historic parks and buildings we love, from precious memories and collections to rare wildlife.

Follow us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram and use #NationalLottery and #HLFsupported.

Follow @HeritageFundUK on TwitterFacebook and Instagram and use #NationalLotteryHeritageFund

Mike Appleton

Marketing and Communications Officer

Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust

Main Street | Clapham | via Lancaster | LA2 8DP

T 015242 51002

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Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust is a small charity doing big things in the Yorkshire Dales. Donate today and make a big difference to the Dales  

Our work is supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery

Registered Charity No. 1061687. Company Limited by guarantee, Registered in England, No. 3236813

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