Some people get a train set; fewer people get a chance to enjoy the real thing - but you can do just that. A Footplate Experience course on the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway is something that is sure to thrill and certainly makes a brilliant Christmas, birthday or anniversary gift!
Our courses offer a driving experience over the full length of our line between Broadway to Cheltenham.
The Loco you will get to drive will be drawn from fleet of powerful main-line diesel locomotives which includes Class 45, Class 47 and the ever popular Class 37.
Each course will take six participants, who will each be able to drive between Broadway and Cheltenham Racecourse or vice versa. On your course you will be hauling a train of up to seven Mk I carriages.
Each participant can be accompanied by up to two guests at a cost of £30 each who may travel in the train during the course.
Please note that participants must be over 18 yrs and all guests must be over the age of 16 yrs.
Your Driver Experience Day starts at 0900 at Toddington Station and finishes there at approximately 1730.
The course includes:
- Full English breakfast on arrival in the Flag & Whistle Café for participants and guests
- Explanation of the day's events and safety briefing
- Three round trips between Broadway and Cheltenham, a total of 84 miles, during which you will drive your diesel locomotive over approximately 14 miles of the line, hauling up to eight heritage railway carriages, under expert supervision. You will also act as second man for a further 14 miles.
- Packed lunches for participants and guests
- Signal Box and Diesel Loco Shed tour (participants only)
- Free year's membership of the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway for the participant, including member's benefits (worth up to £25)
- Free GWSR Guide Book
- Commemorative certificate signed by your driver
No 21 "Mavis" has been stored at Toddington for some while, awaiting refurbishment. It is privately owned.
Preserved in 1987 by the Paignton & Dartmouth Railway, moved to the GWSR by March 2004.
DMU / Railcar
Cars W51360 and W51372 are owned by Cotswold Diesel Railcar Limited . W51360 is currently the 'spare' for our 117 set and W51372 is awaiting restoration.
DMU / Railcar
W55003 is a Class 122 'Bubblecar' owned by Cotswold Diesel Railcar Limited and is currently undergoing refurbishment plus the creation of wheelchair-friendly accommodation at Toddington.
DMU / Railcar
Normally comprising cars W51405 (DMS), W59510 (TCL), W51363 (DMBS), this Class 117 unit was purchased in 2011 by Cotswold Diesel Railcar Limited and is now running regular services from Toddington.
'John' has been on the Railway for over 30 years. The loco is presently undergoing restoration including the construction of a virtually new boiler.
20228 (D8128) - Class 20 Diesel Electric Locomotive. 20228 is privately owned and is now a permanent resident on the GWR. 20228 moved to the GWR in 2020 and should become serviceable during the 2022 season.
372 arrived at Toddington in October 1999 and since then has been used extensively as yard shunter.
D2280 arrived on the GWSR in 2018 and is now part of the shunting fleet at Toddington. It is privately owned . There is a Bachman model of this locomotive available in BR green.
11230 arrived on the GWSR in 2003 and is now working at Toddington with its restoration almost complete.
D2182 is usually to be seen shunting at the carriage works at Winchcombe
47376 is owned by The Brush Type 4 Fund and is a permanent resident on the GWR. The Brush Type 4 Fund was formed in 1992 and, in November 2002, bought No 47376. The loco was transported to the GWR in 2003 after receiving a replacement engine at Ashchurch from sister loco No 47295.
The Brush Type 4 Fund was formed in 1992 with the aim of preserving a Series Parallel Class 47, after 2 years of fund raising 47105 was bought from Crewe in January 1994.
A class 45/1 Diesel Electric Locomotive. This locomotive is owned by The Cotswold Mainline Diesel Group and is a permanent resident on the GWR. It first ran in preservation during the 2013 Heritage Diesel Weekend.
A class 37/0 Diesel Electric Locomotive, is owned by The Growler Group and is a permanent resident on the GWR. 37215 was preserved in 1994 and was returned to working order in 1998.
A class 37/0 Diesel Electric Locomotive, is owned by four individuals who are both Growler Group members and active working members of the GWR diesel department and is a permanent resident on the GWR. 37248 came to Toddington in 2010 and has undergone an extensive refurbishment including the provision of steam heating and a return to BR green.
A class 26 Diesel Electric Locomotive. This locomotive is owned by The Cotswold Mainline Diesel Group and is a permanent resident on the GWR. 26043 ran for the first time in preservation during the 2013 Heritage Diesel Weekend.
A privately owned and is a permanent resident on the GWR. 24081 was preserved in 1981 and has remained operational throughout its life in preservation. Its bogie refurbishment is now complete and the loco is fit for service.
A class 20 Diesel Electric Locomotive. 20137 is privately owned and is a permanent resident on the GWR. 20137 was purchased from British Rail at Wigan in 1994 and moved to the GWR. 20137 was returned to working order in 1995.
A BR Standard Class 4 mixed traffic locomotive, built 1956. Restoration started.
A '2884' class heavy freight locomotive, built 1942. Owned by Dinmore Manor Locomotive Limited, it is at Toddington for its 10-year overhaul.
A '28xx' class heavy freight locomotive, built 1918. This locomotive is owned by The 2874 Trust Limited and it is slowly being restored from 'Barry Scrapyard' condition.
A '28xx' class heavy freight locomotive, built in 1905. This locomotive is owned by Cotswold Steam Preservation Limited and, after a 29 year restoration, is one of the GWR's resident locomotives.
Peninsular & Oriental S. N. Co.
35006 Peninsular & Oriental S. N. Co. is a Southern Railway rebuilt Merchant Navy Class 4-6-2 steam locomotive. It was built at Eastleigh locomotive works in December 1941 and given the Southern Railway number 21C6.
Although every inch a Great Western Railway thoroughbred, No. 7903 Foremarke Hall was one of the 79XX series, in the last batch of the Modified Hall class built at Swindon in 1949 under BR auspices.