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7 vintage trains you can ride on in Norfolk

PUBLISHED: 14:03 18 February 2020 | UPDATED: 14:12 18 February 2020

Luxury train The Northern Belle train is coming to Norwich Credit: Courtesy of Northern Belle

Luxury train The Northern Belle train is coming to Norwich Credit: Courtesy of Northern Belle

Helen Cathcart

From Britain’s version of the Orient Express to a steam train along the coast, go back in time and enjoy a dose of nostalgia on these vintage railways in Norfolk.

The Mid-Norfolk Railway Credit: Ian BurtThe Mid-Norfolk Railway Credit: Ian Burt

1. Mid-Norfolk Railway

Where: Dereham Station, NR19 1DF

Opening times: Timetable available at mnr.org.uk

Cost: Adults from £12, children (5 to 15) £4, under 5s free, concessions (over 60s, students, disabled) from £11, registered carers from £6, dogs and bikes £2

Ride on a heritage railway in the heart of Norfolk between Dereham and Wymondham Abbey, which offers unspoilt countryside views and you can also stop in villages such as Yaxham and Thuxton along the way.

They also run special events throughout the year, which have their own timetables and fares, including the The Flying Scotsman Experience in October and The Polar Express Train Ride at Christmas.

The Northern Belle nods to the golden days of rail travel and features 1930s-style carriages Credit: Courtesy of Northern BelleThe Northern Belle nods to the golden days of rail travel and features 1930s-style carriages Credit: Courtesy of Northern Belle

2. Northern Belle

Where: Norwich Station, NR1 1EF

Opening times: June 13 to 14, December 16

Cost: From £210, visit northernbelle.co.uk or phone 01270 899681

Britain's version of the Orient Express returns to Norwich this summer and is a nod to the golden days of rail travel with seven 1930s-style Pullman carriages with fancy decor and dining tables inside.

On the Saturday there will be a round-trip to Chatsworth House in Derbyshire to the RHS Flower Show, complete with brunch and dinner, and on Sunday there will be the choice of a roast dinner or afternoon tea for a six-hour round trip through the countryside. The Christmas lunch train is also back by popular demand this December and features a seven-course meal and table magicians.

The Norfolk Lights Express, which runs between Sheringham and Holt, returns this Christmas Credit: North Norfolk RailwayThe Norfolk Lights Express, which runs between Sheringham and Holt, returns this Christmas Credit: North Norfolk Railway

3. North Norfolk Railway

Where: Sheringham Station, NR26 8RA

Opening times: Timetable available at nnrailway.co.uk

Cost: Adults £14, children (3 to 15) £10, under 3s free, seniors (over 65) £13, dogs and bikes £2

It is all steam ahead on the north Norfolk coast as you ride from the Victorian seaside resort of Sheringham to the Georgian town of Holt, with stops in Weybourne and Kelling Heath Park along the way.

They also have a jam-packed events programme, which is priced separately, including their popular gin train and the Norfolk Lights Express which launched last Christmas and is set to return and brighten up those dark winter nights once more.

There are four trains to ride at Bressingham Steam and Gardens Credit: Denise BradleyThere are four trains to ride at Bressingham Steam and Gardens Credit: Denise Bradley

4. Bressingham Steam and Gardens

Where: Low Road, IP22 2AA

Opening times: Every day from March 27 to November 1, 10.30am to 5pm (5.30pm June to August)

Cost: Steam days: Advance adults £13.63, senior (65+) £12.72, children (3 to 16) £8.63, under 3s free, bressingham.merlintickets.co.uk

Bressingham offers a fun day out for all the family and features Alan Bloom's collection of plants and industrial, mainly steam-powered, engineering and it has been open to the public since 1961.

There are four train journeys to choose from and over four miles of narrow-gauge steam lines to explore and the attraction also boasts The Gallopers and a 20-acre garden. Non-steam days are Mondays and Tuesdays outside school holidays, where usually only one train and The Gallopers will be operating. They are also open for February half-term until Sunday, between 11am and 4pm, and tickets cost £5 for adults and £4 for children.

The Wells and Walsingham Railway Credit: Ian BurtThe Wells and Walsingham Railway Credit: Ian Burt

5. The Wells and Walsingham Light Railway

Where: Wells-next-the-Sea, NR23 1QB

Opening times: Timetable available at wwlr.co.uk

Cost: Adult return £9.50, child return £7.50, under 4s free £2 off for over 65s on Fridays

Enjoy a big day out on the world's smallest public railway with steam trains running from idyllic Wells-next-the-Sea to the beautiful village of Walsingham, where you can visit its famous Abbey.

They regularly run special events, including the upcoming White Rabbit Easter Trail from March 28 to April 19 where children can join Alice in Wonderland to hunt for clues and those taking part from Good Friday to Easter Monday, for an additional £1, will receive a boxed Easter Egg.

The Bure Valley Railway runs between Aylsham and Wroxham Credit: Mark BullimoreThe Bure Valley Railway runs between Aylsham and Wroxham Credit: Mark Bullimore

6. Bure Valley Railway

Where: Aylsham Station, NR11 6BW

Opening times: Timetable available at www.bvrw.co.uk

Cost: Adult return (16+) £14.50, child (5 to 15) £7, child (0-4) free, dog £3.50

Enjoy a nostalgic ride on Norfolk's longest narrow gauge railway which runs between Aylsham and Wroxham, located at the heart of the Norfolk Broads.

The single trip between the two locations takes 45 minutes and runs over 18 miles through the picturesque Bure Valley countryside and stops in the villages Brampton, Buxton and Coltishall where you can hop off and explore.

The clock is turned back to the 1940s at Whitwell and Reepham Station, pictured is railway guard George Sawyer-Stone Credit: Denise BradleyThe clock is turned back to the 1940s at Whitwell and Reepham Station, pictured is railway guard George Sawyer-Stone Credit: Denise Bradley

7. Whitwell & Reepham Station

Where: Reepham, NR10 4GA

Opening times: Timetable available at whitwellstation.com

Cost: Adult return £3, child return £1

Whitwell and Reepham Railway Preservation Society was formed in 2008 and opened to the public in February 2009, which was exactly 50 years after the line was closed to passengers.

They also run events throughout the year and coming up is Steam Sunday on March 1, the Gin Train on March 7 and 1940s weekend on April 4 to 5.


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