What is it like aboard the new Norfolk Lights Express?
PUBLISHED: 20:54 20 November 2019 | UPDATED: 09:04 21 November 2019
Norfolk is on track for a dazzling festive season following the launch of a heritage railway’s first-ever Norfolk Lights Express.
Scores of people flocked to the North Norfolk Railway at Sheringham on Wednesday to be part of the first of these special services, which wind their way after dark through the forests and fields to Holt and back.
But the train, driven by steam locomotive 76084, is any thing but dark.
It is bedecked in a rainbow of coloured lights, which are connected by 2.5 miles of electrical cable.
Railway spokesman Trevor Eady said: "I'm astounded by what we've actually achieved.
"There are scenes of deer and things set up in the landscape as you go along, The train is GPS tracked, so as it goes past certain points the lights on those scenes will go on or off."
As the train passes under the bridge at Weybourne station a flurry of artificial snow is set off by the GPS system, adding to the 'winter wonderland' feel.
Mr Eady said: "There's are also 90 floodlights on the whole train which shine different colours out onto the landscape as you go along."
Christine and Norman Wilson, from Cambridge, were among the first guests to experience the Norfolk Lights Express. They both said they thought the service would be a success.
Mr Wilson said: "It was like a magic forest. All sorts of multi-coloured lights shining on the trees. It was lovely, spectacular."
Mrs Wilson added: "There's one or two scenes - there's deer in the forest and things like that.
"For children, it must look like an enchanted forest, so they look out for elves and pixies and so on."
Mr Eady added: "This is something not just for the children, but also for the adults, and hopefully it will bring people into the area as well."
The experience starts with a rendition of Queen's Can't Stop Me Now, performed from the top of the footbridge over the tracks.
The railway is running a total of 55 of the services in the lead-up to New Year's Eve, in addition to the Santa Special trains they run each year.
For more information, visit www.nnrailway.co.uk.
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