Trains steam back on track in Whitehead at weekend

Steam trains will be back in action for the first time this year over the upcoming bank holiday weekend at Whitehead Railway Museum.

Wednesday, 26th May 2021, 3:49 pm

The Railway Preservation Society of Ireland will be operating steam train rides at the museum this Saturday, Sunday and Monday.

The steam train rides, which travel the length of the RPSI’s siding, will be the first steam trains in action in Northern Ireland this year.

The trains will be running regularly from 11am to 4pm and tickets must be pre-booked from Visit Belfast either online or in person.

Carriage No. 68 on the track.

Lisa Adair, the RPSI general manager, said: “We’re so excited to be getting back in action and welcoming visitors through our doors again.

“The steam train rides are an ideal outing for families and although it’s a short trip the train ride recreates the atmosphere of a trip on a steam train.”

Visitors who are in a bubble will be assigned their own exclusive compartments either for a party of up to six or a party of up to three.

Tickets are priced at £20 for a party of up to six and £10 for a party of up to three.

The carriage being used is No 68 which dates from 1922 and originally operated in England, before being brought over to Belfast to replace rolling stock lost in the 1941 Blitz.

And the locomotive hauling the train is even older – No 131 dates from 1901 and was built for the Great Northern Railway (Ireland) to operate on the Belfast-Dublin line.

Lisa said: “The safety of our visitors, staff and volunteers is paramount and before opening we carried out detailed risk assessments and secured the industry ‘Good to Go’ standard.”

A new attraction is Platform 3, the recently opened café on the platform at Whitehead Railway Museum, offering refreshments throughout the day, and plenty of open-air seating.

The museum itself, which has been closed for the past nine months, is due to reopen on Thursday, June 3 and will be open every week from Thursday to Saturday.

For more details visit www.steamtrainsireland.com.

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Click here to read: £4m Whitehead attraction draws 25,000 visitors

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