Santa returns to the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway
By David Wood
The UK has gone through some of the hottest days on record but the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway (GWSR) is already making tracks through the snow with its popular steam-hauled 'Santa Express' tickets now on sale.
Tickets became available at the beginning of September and are already selling fast, according to the GWSR's marketing manager, Catherine Johnson.
She said: "For the first time since 2019, the full steam Santa Express train service will operate from Cheltenham Racecourse, running through the glorious Cotswold winter scenery and through dark Greet Tunnel to the North Pole at Winchcombe.
"The last couple of years have seen our Christmas trains restricted with reduced capacity because of Covid social distancing rules, while trains were run from Toddington over just three miles - it's really exciting that we're back to full operation!"
Every family will enjoy a personal audience with Father Christmas while all youngsters receive an exciting gift. These special family encounters take place in Santa's grotto within a specially-converted railway carriage at North Pole station.
"This will make it a really magical occasion for all the family," added Catherine.
In addition, a range of entertainment is being laid on as well as refreshments - including the railway's famous mince pies, at North Pole station. The event is entirely organised by an enthusiastic team of GWSR volunteers who are dedicated to making sure that everyone has a memorable day on the railway.
Tickets can be booked online at www.gwsr.com where there is also full information. To be sure of securing seats on the Santa Express, early booking is advised, especially as the days immediately before Christmas are the most popular.
Santa Express services operate every weekend from 26th November to 18th December plus 21st to 23rd December.
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