Heritage railway at Woody Bay has now carried more than 500,000 passengers since it reopened in 2004

The Robson family from Berkshire have become the 500,000th passengers on the Lynton & Barnstaple Railway. Picture: Trevor GarnhamThe Robson family from Berkshire have become the 500,000th passengers on the Lynton & Barnstaple Railway. Picture: Trevor Garnham

The Lynton and Barnstaple Railway is celebrating carrying its 500,000th passenger.

Despite having only a mile of track so far, the heritage railway which starts at Woody Bay Station has carried half a million people since it reopened in 2004.

The Robson family from Berkshire, with their children Amy, aged seven and Craig aged 12, were the visitors who took it over the line.

The famous narrow gauge railway which ran from Lynton to Barnstaple for less than 40 years has £16million ambitions to reopen swathes of track and put North Devon back on the map as a rail destination.

A series of planning applications have been submitted to help make this a reality and it is hoped the Exmoor National Park Authority applications could be decided as soon as January.

The line opened in 1898 but closed in 1935 – since 1979 a dedicated band of enthusiasts have been working to get sections of it open again.