Set within the attractive conservation village of Elsecar is Elsecar Heritage Centre, a unique attraction and a working hub of industry to explore.
Transformed in the late 18th century by the Earl Fitzwilliam, Elsecar village became a thriving centre of iron and coal, one of England’s most flourishing hubs of industry. Take in the quaint cottages, pretty canal and working steam railway that date back to Georgian and Victorian times. Browse the Elsecar Workshops, now home to shops, cafes, delicatessens and antiques.
See the oldest steam engine anywhere still in its original location, the newly restored 1795 Newcomen Beam Engine. Described as the most important piece of industrial heritage in the world, in 1928 American industrialist Henry Ford offered a blank cheque to take the engine to Michigan; this was politely refused.
Elsecar, in the Northern England borough of Barnsley, is on the European Route of Industrial Heritage along with Kelham Island Museum, the National Coal Mining Museum and Wentworth Woodhouse, all nearby.
Elsecar is 2 hours 25 minutes from London by rail.