Former cabinet minister Michael Portillo joined passengers on a trip along Shropshire’s Severn Valley Railway for filming for his new TV series.
Mr Portillo travelled along the line from Kidderminster to Bridgnorth and spent an hour interviewing David Williams, one of the railway’s founding volunteers, as part of filming for BBC’s Great British Railway Journeys.
The show is due to be aired next year.
Mr Williams, who was the the inspiration behind the railway’s rescue in the 1960s after the line was closed as part of the Beeching cuts, gave Mr Portillo an insight into Severn Valley Railway’s development and the challenges that had been overcome to help make the line the attraction it is today.
The BBC crew also stopped off at Bewdley to film a pigeon carriage currently undergoing restoration before continuing to Bridgnorth.
It comes just weeks ahead of the launch of a £3 million share offer on October 1 to fund new investment including as a visitor centre at Bridgnorth station.
The full length of the Severn Valley line between Shrewsbury and Hartlebury in Worcestershire closed in 1963, but after volunteers campaigned to restore the line part of the line near Bridgnorth became operational by 1970.
The full length of the current heritage line running to Kidderminster was open by 1984.
Mr Portillo, who served in John Major’s cabinet between 1992 and 1997 and also stood for the conservative party leadership, has since become a regular face on TV as a trains enthusiast.
He said: “As the Severn Valley Railway is an historic Victorian railway, it fitted in with the story we were doing about industrialisation in the West Midlands.
“But, let’s face it, it’s also fun to ride on this heritage line. The British are crazy about their heritage lines and enjoy them enormously.
“Since I started making this programme nearly everything I’ve come across has been something I did not know or has been unexpected. I only hope the viewers share my sense of wonder.”
The show also featuresBridgnorth’s Cliff Railway, the only working inland funicular railway in the country, which Mr Portillo went to see during his visit.