Railway romance return?

Is there a bright future?

Andrew Howells
5 min readMar 18, 2022

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© Peder Fjordvang Photo: VisitVejle

The sun was setting on a still, March winter evening as our train from Copenhagen to Arhus approached Vejle. The Vejle Fjord which we’d been tracking for a short while, spills into the Kattegat, bound by the Danish Strait islands and Baltic Sea to the south, Sweden to the east.

In the Middle Ages, the Danish royal family prospered from the Sound Tolls, Øresundstolden, which ships paid until 1857, protecting them from sandy and stony reefs, tricky currents, even pirates, as fresh supplies and ship repairs were found in busy Copenhagen to the south.

Our view was interrupted by the Vejle Fjord road bridge, Vejlefjordbroen, (above) moving vehicles north and south without upsetting the relative calm of Vejle. I preferred the distraction of the warm, orange embers on the picture windows of the famous Danish Sommerhuse, scattered behind the beaches on the north shore of the fjord.

Where?

We were off to meet John and Karin, our good friends in Aarhus, Denmark’s second city for a long weekend. Usually, we would take a very early Ryanair flight from Stansted. It’s cheap, the car park coming a close second in cost to an airline ticket.

This time we flew British Airways to Copenhagen. We can afford the time and we wanted to spend a day exploring, before starting our train journey.

We now want to return. A day was not enough, as John gently reminded me, if we were serious about exploring Danish history in this beautiful, capital city.

While sitting in our super comfortable standard class carriage, akin to First Class in the UK, I started musing about never flying here again.

The promise of a railway journey

In our kitchen, three pictures hang high, reminders of the halcyon days of train travel. Poster prints made popular in the interwar period, encouraging people to take their holidays by train, often too seaside destinations around Britain. These are prints from Kelly Hall…

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Andrew Howells

Writer, male, London. Enough time to tell stories https://andrewhowells.substack.com/