The best photos from 2021

Friday, 21 January 2022

I think we can all agree that 2021 was a strange old year. It was the end of an era as Daft Punk announced their breakup and there was the beginning of a new Presidency in the USA.

Throughout the lockdowns, boats getting stuck in the Suez Canal, and failed new social media platforms (we’re looking at you, Clubhouse), it was photos of your adventures, walks and travels which kept us going. So as a way of saying “thank you” and to celebrate the good times, here are some of our favourite photos from the past year.


Unfortunately, January saw another round of lockdowns across the UK. However, many of us took that as an opportunity to experience the wonderful underfoot crunchy feeling on frosty walks in the countryside.

We love this photo of Eddie, who went exploring with his human @dogfriendlysheffield , and found a wonderful view of Sheffield.


Across the pond, a crowdless Super Bowl took place, with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers clinching the title at their home stadium, and The Weeknd taking centre-stage for the halftime show. As is the norm in the UK, February brought with it some snow.

This photo of one of our aubergine units chugging through the countryside and through the snow caught our eye in February. Captured by American photographer @anamericaninuk , Doesn’t it look magical?


March saw the 63rd Grammy Awards take place, at which Beyonce broke the record for most Grammys ever won by a singer (28). Closer to home, we were anticipating the arrival of slightly warmer weather and longer evenings.

Over on the ‘gram, this photo not only resonated with us, but many of you! It was one of our most-liked photos in March, and it’s clear to see why. A wonderful snap by @graciebellecochrane, with one of our aubergine machines in the background.


A quiet month on our social media channels, for a number of reasons. We sadly saw the passing of His Royal Highness, The Duke of Edinburgh and therefore joined much of the UK in a social media silence in order to pay our respects.

This wonderful headshot of His Royal Highness was shared in honour of his services to the United Kingdom.


For those of us who are a part of the railway family, May was a big month for us all. It was finally the time for us to say goodbye to the much-loved HST on the Midland Mainline. Saturday 15th May saw its final journey, as the East Midlands Railway InterCity 125s bid farewell after 39 years in service.

What a fantastic shot of our swallow liveried Intercity HST this is by @gregg_poet_photography !


In the month that President Joe Biden had tea with Queen Elizabeth II at Windsor Castle and the title for World’s Oldest Man was claimed by 112-year-old Emilio Flores Márquez from Puerto Rico, Derby saw the arrival of a ram-pede of 30 uniquely painted 5ft ram sculptures to its streets.

This capture of our railway community's ram by @baddileyram highlights the depictions of visitor attractions near stations along the Derwent Valley and North Staffordshire Line.


July saw temperatures rocket, and blood pressures too, as England took on Italy at the UEFA European Championship Final at Wembley. We’re not here to discuss the result, so we’re going to concentrate on the fact that July was also the month in which Norfolk Day took place in the UK!

To celebrate Norfolk Day on July 27th, we shared this stunning shot of Norwich Station by @amanda_leeming .


The Summer Olympic Games officially closed at the Olympic Stadium in Tokyo, Japan on August 8th and Christiano Ronaldo was welcomed back to Old Trafford with open arms!

Meanwhile, in the East Midlands, one of our regional services is snapped pulling into Lincoln - and looking rather sublime in the process. A lovely photo by @jm_transport_06 .


In the month that the kids went back to school after a summer break, and SpaceX launched the first all-civilian space flight from Cape Canaveral, Florida, for a three-day orbit around Earth, Netflix also announced that Shonda Rhimes' "Bridgerton" is its most-watched series ever.

September saw this beautiful capture of St Pancras, by the very talented @philipp_pley .


Mark Zuckerberg announced Facebook will change its corporate name to Meta in the month of October, and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inducted the Foo Fighters, Tina Turner and LL Cool J into its ranks.

More importantly, a very special someone was getting ready for his debut. October was the month of Miles, as we introduced our brand new character into the world! Did you spot him in our teaser social media posts?


Worldwide superstars, Adele and Taylor Swift both released albums to high acclaim; Barbados became a republic, and Jack Dorsey announced that he was stepping down as CEO of Twitter.

Over on our socials, we shared this wonderful image of the Women of Steel statue in Sheffield. Commemorating the women of Sheffield who worked in the city's steel industry during the First World War and Second World War, and work of the sculptor Martin Jennings, the sculpture was unveiled in June 2016.


And just like that, December was upon us! Elon Musk, CEO of SpaceX and Tesla, was named Time's Person of the Year; we sadly said goodbye to Desmond Tutu and Betty White, and much of the country celebrated the festive period.

We shared this snap of one of our 222’s receiving its new livery. Or was it just getting ready to head out for its Christmas do?

The year of 2021 sure was eventful! As always, we love it when you share your adventures with us, and we’d love for you to keep doing so. Don’t forget to tag us or use the hashtag #YesEMR to be featured.

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