Monument to railway heritage

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A book on the lost railways led to an enthusiast building a memorial in tribute to Wetherby’s heritage.

Regular visitor to the town Terrance (Terry) Sykes saw his masterpiece unveiled at the revamped car park on the site of the old station in the town, shortly before Christmas.

Terry said: “Recently I was pleased to see that the car park on the site of the old railway station had received a considerable amount of work from Leeds City Council, and is now a much more attractive area. But the place has a real story to tell! And how best to tell it?”

The monument, which Terry built in his back garden, is a small stone obelisk and each of the four sides has a ceramic picture of the old station and rail network mounted in them.

“The idea is that when you stand and look at one of the pictures, you are looking at the station and seeing it in the present environment,” said Terry.

The tribute came from Terry and his wife taking a short walk along Harland Way.

“It was sometime later after reading a book on lost railways that I realised that there was so much more to discover, and I began looking for the site of the old railway station,” added Terry. On finding it he decided to pay create his tribute.

“Ceramic pictures I felt was a really good idea, there were so many quality images taken by the late Mike Mitchell of Collingham Bridge.

“And if they were arranged in such a fashion as to allow the viewer to see the station in the setting of present day landmarks, then all the better.”

Terry added: “The memorial is now in place and my thanks are due to the Town council secretary Iona Taylor, Coun Vic Hawkings, and especially Wetherby and Leeds city councillor Gerald Wilkinson, for his simple and no nonsense approach to the project.

“Wetherby has given me much pleasure over the last few years. Now I hope I have given something back.”