Santa's New Year specials - 8th and 9th January 2011
article by: Ian Crowder
posted on: 31 December 2010
updated on: 22 April 2011
- Special 'Santa' days on January 8th and
- Reduced price pay-on-the-day tickets include two
presents for youngsters!
- Hot mince pies to round off Christmas!
Over the weekend of 8th and 9th January,
the Honeybourne Line is flinging open its carriage doors for a New
Year Santa party.
The trains are being laid on for everyone who was disappointed
when snow and ice brought Santa Special steam trains to a halt
during what would have been one of the railway's busiest weeks,
just before Christmas. Anyone who would like to experience
this special weekend is also welcome!
This special steam train service runs between Toddington and
Winchcombe, with trains departing from Toddington every hour
between 10.00 and 15.00 on both days. Tickets are just £12.00
per person (£1 discount off usual Santa Special prices) and include
visits to Santa in his grotto at Winchcombe station - and two gifts
for all children! There are no advanced bookings: buy tickets
on the day.
Rounding off the visit are hot mince pies and hot drinks at
Winchcombe station, all included in the price for these special
Colin Fewell, commercial director and 'chief elf' at the
Honeybourne Line says: "Although the snowy conditions were perfect
for Santa's sleigh, that same weather led to frozen points, frozen
water supply (vital for steam engines!) and nearly a foot of snow
on platforms, bridges and roadways. It also meant that many
of our volunteers couldn't get to the railway to operate the
"We were just as bitterly disappointed as the hundreds of
families who couldn't see Santa. That's why we have decided
to put on this special weekend.
"It's Santa's way to say 'sorry' that so many youngsters were
disappointed that he couldn't see them when the special trains were
Colin pointed out that all those whose trains were cancelled are
receiving a full refund and for the 8th and
9th January trains, there is no need to book.
"Just turn up - tickets will be available at the Toddington
station booking office," he explains.
"Some people have asked if their unused Santa tickets will be
valid on these special trains. But for our volunteer
administrators, it is much more straightforward to provide full
refunds for everyone, so they won't.
"It's also a chance for people who hadn't booked for the
pre-Christmas Santa trains to experience what has been described as
one of the best Santa visits in the Midlands!" he added.
This is the first time in the railway's 29-year history that the
Santa Specials have had to be cancelled because of the
Says Colin: "Snow has never fallen during the Santa Specials and
sometimes we've thought that it would be the perfect finishing
touch. But I guess this is a case of 'being careful about
what you wish for' - a foot of the stuff just caused chaos
throughout the country - not just for the Honeybourne Line."
Meanwhile, trains are running on New Year's Day and on
Sunday 2nd and Monday 3rd January to the
revised Blue Timetable between
Toddington and Gotherington.
The line is closed from 10th January for winter maintenance and
essential permanent way works until Saturday 26th March. Click here for the
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