Living Museum of the Great Western Railway

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VIP DAY - Behind the Scenes & Footplate Taster

Join us for very special look behind the scenes on one of our Steam Days including a ride on the footplate of the locomotives in action on the day of your visit – please call 01235 817200 to book.

Meet your friendly and knowledgeable guide over coffee and then set off around the 25-acre site to discover a little of the history of the Great Western Railway and our unique collection of locomotives, carriages and wagons.

You will have access to areas that are not normally on public view, including workshops (where you can see the painstaking work that goes to restore and maintain our historic vehicles), signalboxes and the Guard’s compartment so you can see what it takes to keep the trains running safely.  There will be a chance to get hands-on and control trains using the 1960s technology in the Swindon Panel display where an expert will help you keep trains running smoothly on a virtual Great Western mainline!

The highlight for many will be climbing into the cab alongside the driver and fireman for a trip on the footplate as the train steams along one of the Centre’s demonstration lines.  There will also be time for a second cab ride on the steam or diesel locomotive working trains on our second line.  

A two-course lunch in the Centre’s refreshment rooms for you and your guests is also included and you will receive a year's membership of the Great Western Society along with a souvenir of your visit.

VIP Days are available on most of our 2020 Steam Days but numbers are limited and advance booking essential.  They can also be purchased as a gift certificate.

The cost inclusive of lunch is £125. You can bring friends or family who can accompany you for the tour and enjoy the day for £25 each including lunch (advance booking is essential). We recommend that guests are aged 12 or above and children under 16 must be accompanied by an adult in addition to the participant.

Don’t forget: Being around railway locomotives is not clean, so wear clothes to suit the location! Participants must be over 18 and reasonably fit and able bodied to ride on the footplate.

Numbers are strictly limited so please book early – please call 01235 817200. 

These days can also be purchased as a gift certificate valid for the whole of 2020 allowing the recipient to pick from the dates available.

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