Tanks and tankards attract thousands to Mid Norfolk Railway

The Dereham Music and Beer Festival at the Mid-Norfolk Railway. Pictured is Claire Bolster. Picture:

The Dereham Music and Beer Festival at the Mid-Norfolk Railway. Pictured is Claire Bolster. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

Thousands flocked to a real ale and steam festival in the heart of Norfolk.

The event, at Dereham Station, boasted four locomotives, 35 ales and 17 ciders.

'Over the last four days we've had about 4,000 visitors,' said general manager George Saville. 'Slightly more than we were expecting.

'The beer festival goes from strength to strength, it's in its fifth year here, it's the first time we've tried having a steam event at the same time.'

Three pannier tank engines from the former Great Western Railway hauled trains along the 14-mile restored railway between Dereham and Wymondham.


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'If Dereham had been on the Great Western, it's the sort of engine you would have expected to see here,' explained Mr Saville.

They were joined by Metropolitan Number One, which pulled the last steam train on the London Underground in 1961.

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Beers from the pannier tanks' former stamping ground were well-represented - along with brews from as far afield as Scotland. By last night, more than 3,500 pints had been sunk by enthusiastic visitors to the station.

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