Jenny Agutter felt like no time had passed between Railway Children movies
Jenny Agutter remembers shooting ‘The Railway Children’ “like it was yesterday”.
The 69-year-old actress is the only original cast member from the 1970 movie – which was based on E. Nesbit’s book of the same name - to have reprised her role in the upcoming ‘The Railway Children Return’ and she admitted it felt like no time at all had passed when she returned to the same filming location, despite so much having changed in her own life since then.
She told Harper's Bazaar magazine: “There’s a moment in ‘The Railway Children Return’ when my character Roberta – who is now a grandmother – talks about remembering being sent to the countryside like it was yesterday.
“That resonates with me personally because I, too, recall first setting foot on the platform at Yorkshire’s Oakworth station when I was just 17, playing the young Bobbie in Lionel Jeffries’ 1970 film.
“Revisiting something from your past is both exciting and makes you realise what can be lost, because there seems to be nothing between then and now.
“I’ve lived in America, got married, had a child, become a grandmother myself – and yet Oakworth still looks much the same. It is as if time has telescoped…
“I’m sure Nesbit would have loved the idea of her characters getting another chapter, because she believed in time travel.
“Here, we have a new generation of railway children exploring that same track, having adventures that belong in a different era.
“So when I’m asked, ‘Do you remember being here?’ the answer is, yes, like it was yesterday.”
Although the new film is set during World War II, Jenny thinks there are a lot of parallels to draw with the world today.
She said: “The film is about a very particular period in history and part of what it’s doing is teaching children today about what it was like during World War II, but I’m conscious it may also put us in mind of what’s happening in Ukraine right now – the very present reality of violence, of refugees, of loss of life.
“It is terrifying that, having gone through two World Wars, we’re once again experiencing something that could escalate, but we also need to know there’s a part of mankind that hangs on to the good, that will come out stronger in the end.”