KEIGHLEY’S tiny Damems’ railway station has become a worldwide hit thanks to a man living nearby.

Ian Kelly’s picture of a steam train at the station has helped his photography web page attract a quarter of a million views.

The image is one of several which have scored 16,169 hits as people across the globe flock to view his distinctive images.

Lifelong Keighley resident Ian, 52, who lives in Damems, set up the Facebook page entitled Yorkshire Photography I.P.Kelly just over a year ago.

He said: “Almost one quarter of a million people from around the world have engaged with what Yorkshire has to offer.

“My images are being shared, and comments aired, thousands of times from within a whole range of countries, which include Israel, Bulgaria, Netherlands, USA, Australia, Italy, Saudi Arabia, India, Canada, Spain, Poland, France, Germany and other European countries.”

Ian’s page has almost 1,000 followers and a reach of 26,790 people, and contains hundreds of photographs from in and around the Keighley area.

The subject matter ranges from wildlife, landscape and plants, to trains, buildings and other places.

Ian said: “Followers from around the world seem to enjoy Damems train station. Cliffe Castle also had a huge audience reach of 18,798 with 78 world shares.

“Haworth still remains the people’s choice by notching up a worldwide target reach of 34,966 with 86 shares.

“Let’s not forget Oakworth, which remains a great audience favourite, with a target reach of 7,445 and 23 shares in various parts of the world. Skipton castle has 71 shares.”

Ian was brought up in Bracken Bank before moving elsewhere in Keighley, and is now back on the slopes of the Worth Valley, just below Bracken Bank.

He works as an internal auditor in Keighley at global engineering company Teconnex.

Ian said: “I’ve always had a keen interest in nature and love of wildlife, but photographing it came much later in life, and almost by mistake.

“One day I took a random photo and had a hunch to post it on a social media site.

“I was really surprised by the comments it received.

“That spurred me on, and it wasn’t long after that I purchased my first camera.

“It’s great when something you create is appreciated, and commented on.

“However, that’s when the challenge became greater; I found myself pushing for a better photo because I was enjoying the positive feedback I was getting.

“I had a good understanding of what caught my eye, but I wasn’t sure if other people would see the same. I decided to create a social media photography page.”

Over the next few months Ian’s photography page attracted more and more visitors, who left ‘likes’ and shares.

Ian said: “This really did blow me away.

“They were shared by people from Israel, Taiwan, Bulgaria, Netherlands, USA, Australia, Italy, Saudi Arabia, India, Canada, Spain, Poland, France, Germany and other European countries.

“I still have to pinch myself as the page continues to grow, and I’m amazed that almost one quarter of a million people here and around the world have engaged with my page.”

Ian began communicating with people who visited the page, and discovered that many had connections in Keighley and surrounding areas like Haworth, Skipton and Oakworth.

He said: “It’s always about their times here growing up, or visiting relatives: places they’ve been and fields they’ve walked.

“They all share real sentimental values and love of our great place, whether it be fields, hills, buildings, streets.

“The photos must take them back to a time and place they miss most: I’m humbled to able to help them see that.

“Some have never been but wish to visit Yorkshire.

“They just like the simplicity of our surroundings, the rural feel about it.

“I’ve found that people’s preference to a photo isn’t so much the clarity, but the honesty of it – I try to capture a true reflection of our environment.

“Whether it’s overcast or not, here in England, Yorkshire, we have the best climate in the world.

“Life isn’t all about sunsets and blue skies and I think they appreciate that.”

Ian said that from all the lovely comments he received, one sticks out most in his mind.

He said: “It came from a fella who was no longer able to venture outside due to health reasons, and thanked me for the images and a window to the outside world.

“That really got me.”

Ian wanted to encourage other people thinking of getting a camera, to “grab one, get outside and record their journey”.

He added: “I purchased my first camera 14 months ago, with no camera or photography experience.

“It cost £110 and I’m still using it now. I’d like to move up a step now, but it’ll do for a while longer.

“I think people shy away from photography because they feel they need to spend a fortune, but they don’t.

“The most that will be spent is time learning – get out and enjoy, in all weathers. “

Ian hopes next year to prepare a calendar for a local charity.

l Ian’s pictures can be seen at