A touch of steamy nostalgia to warm you up this winter

Dorset Echo: Let the train take the strain Let the train take the strain

ENTHUSIASTS are invited to take a nostalgic trip on a heritage railway line over the festive period.

The Swanage Railway’s ‘Winter Warm Up’ mini gala day will see classic steam and diesel locomotives, together with a nostalgic freight train, running through the Purbeck countryside.

Staff say the event, on Saturday December 28, will be the perfect way to blow out the Christmas cobwebs.

Swanage Railway General Manager Richard Jones said: “The public will be able to enjoy the nostalgic delights of classic steam and diesel locomotives – and an evocative freight train from yesteryear – against the beautiful backdrop of the Purbeck countryside and the dramatic ruins of Corfe Castle.

“It’s the perfect way to blow away the Christmas Day and Boxing Day cobwebs by getting out into the bracing Isle of Purbeck for a really enjoyable, nostalgic and evocative day out. Nothing could be better.”

Subject to availability, the featured steam locomotives hauling passenger trains will be A Victorian-designed 1905 London and South Western Railway M7 tank No. 30053, a 1947 express Southern Railway Battle of Britain class Bulleid Pacific No. 34070 ‘Manston’ and a 1960 British Railways Class 33 diesel-electric No. 33111.

Tank engine No. 30053 used to haul trains for British Railways to Swanage from 1963 to 1964, when it was withdrawn.

The Class 33 locomotive hauled the last ‘push-pull’ passenger train to Swanage just before the branch was closed.

Mr Jones said: “A new winter mini-gala event, our ‘Winter Warm Up’ offers something a little bit special to the public between Christmas and new year when many people are on holiday with their families and wanting to enjoy a day out with a difference.”

To add to the nostalgia, a milk tanker wagon will be attached to the rear of the steam trains in a throwback to when freight wagons were added to passenger trains.

Train times and more information on 01929 425800 or see swanagerailway.co.uk

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