Nene Valley Railway

Last weekend we had a family wedding to attend in Peterborough, which is a good few hours away from where we live. Being a wedding we had plenty of notice to look for something to do the day after the wedding as we had planned to stay overnight and save the journey home in the evening.

We decided we didn’t want anything that was going to take up the whole day, we planned on travelling back by early Sunday afternoon. That meant we could still give the children dinner at home and do our normal bedtime routine. While doing the research on what to do near to where we stayed we came across Nene Valley Railway.

Nene Valley Railway is a 15 mile round trip on either a steam or heritage diesel train. The train journey takes you through Nene Valley countryside and 5 stations (including the one you start at). Throughout the year they do a variety of events as well if you wanted to get involved in one of their events.

img_5926Tip – Check online for the events as some book very quickly, from what we heard the Afternoon Tea journey proves very popular and books very quickly.

The tickets for the ride are ‘Rover’ tickets which means you can hop on and off the train throughout the course of the day. An adult is priced at £16, Children over 3 years of age £8.  These prices were no different with booking online or paying on the day.

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We arrived just before 10am at Wansford Station (which is the main station for this railway) to catch the first train of the day. There was no steam train the day we were there so we had the heritage diesel instead. We did take the buggy with us on to the train, in hindsight we needn’t have bothered, I thought we were planning on getting off at some stops but we didn’t in the end.

Tip – If you do plan on getting off at various stops, be aware there is limited space to put a buggy on to the carriage. Expect that to be even more difficult in busy times. 

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Just as we set off going westwards to the first station the volunteers were going around the carriages and punching your little tickets. We couldn’t fault the volunteers they were all so friendly and you could see that they all really enjoyed what they were doing. They just seemed to make that extra effort for the children as well which is always a bonus from my point of view.

There was a tunnel that we had to go through at this end of the line, Henry loved it, Mollie not so much. Luckily we stopped at the station and then the rest of the line was back the other way. So while we were waited at the station we got to see the Diesel engine come past to couple up at the other end of the train. Mollie wasn’t so impressed when we had to go back through the tunnel.

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The train ride did take you through some very pretty countryside and some of the stations were equally just as pretty. You can get off at each station, some have various walks you can do through the country or along the river. As we didn’t get off at any station if you want to know more detail about the attractions at each of the stations follow the link here.

Tip – It may be worthwhile having a look at each one before going on your train ride, so you don’t  miss anything you might like to see.

From start to finish the train ride was an almost an hour and a half, from our point of view it seemed to be much shorter. Perhaps because we were all enjoying it so much. It was quite relaxing being on the train, Henry thoroughly enjoyed it, it was his first proper train journey.

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Once we got off we popped into the gift shop and came out with the customary toy train. We also had a drink in the small café at the station, again the volunteers were so warm and friendly with the children. Even though we had paid for lunch boxes for Henry (which they both shared) one of the volunteers came out with a packet of chocolate buttons each. Such a lovely little thing to do.

Before leaving there was just time to have a little play in the park area. Right next to the play area was the Thomas engine. Which was really nice to see up close.

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We really enjoyed it, Henry has already said he would like to go on a different one. So we shall be on the lookout for different steam train railways to try.

If you have any recommendations for any, I’d love to hear.

Jemma x

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