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The Rowsley Association is the corporate name for the ex-Railwaymen and their families from the area who continue to keep in touch with one another through an annual reunion and a half-yearly 20-page Newsletter (originally a quarterly publication of 10 pages).
This camaraderie did not start immediately after the closure of Rowsley as a railway centre. Indeed, it was 1990 before the germ of an idea was sown.
Following the closure of the shed on 3rd October 1966, there had been an 'end of the line' party to mark the break up of this dedicated railway community. A chance discussion in 1990 about photographs taken on that occasion led to three former railwaymen Glynn Waite, Fred Morton and Laurence Knighton considering the possibility of organising a 25th 'anniversary' party. Glynn and Fred had worked at Rowsley, while Laurence, a native of Bakewell, had various connections with the line. With help from their wives, they set about both raising funds for the event and contacting former employees.
The response was quite amazing, and on the evening of 4th October 1991, almost 250 people descended on the former Northwood Institute at Darley Dale, some travelling from as far as the South Coast and London.
Those who attended so enjoyed meeting their former colleagues and talking about 'the good old days', that a request was made to repeat the event on an annual basis. As a further means of keeping in touch and reminiscing about the past, it was decided at the beginning of 1995 to produce a periodic Newsletter. Again, the response has been tremendous and 150 copies of each issue are currently produced. Around 750 pages have been produced in 48 issues and there is plenty more material to be published.
For more information - or if you wish to subscribe to the Newsletter (which currently costs just £4.00 per annum) - email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last updated : 8th May 2016