Join us on this scenic rail tour by steam train through the beautiful Cotswold Hills.
Our destination is the cathedral city of Worcester, located on the banks of the River Severn and internationally famous as the home of Worcestershire Sauce. We travel outward and return via the Cotswold Line through Moreton-in-Marsh and Evesham.
Our steam train leaves London Paddington at around 07:00 hauled by A4 class steam locomotive No. 60009 Union of South Africa and heads down the ex-Great Western Railway (GWR) main line. We stop at Slough, Reading and Didcot to pick up more passengers. Our journey continues through Oxford and, at Wolvercote Junction, we join the Cotswold Line. Parts of this line has had double track reinstated, which reopened in 2011. We pass through Finstock, Charlbury and Ascott-under-Wychwood. The Cotswold Area of outstanding Natural Beauty is characterised by attractive small towns and villages built of Cotswold stone, a yellow oolitic limestone. Rare limestone grassland habitats as well as the old growth beech woodlands typify the area, which is a delight to behold.
We pass through Kingham and Moreton-in-Marsh, then through Campden Tunnel, and speed down Honeybourne Bank to Evesham. We arrive at Worcester Shrub Hill where there will be more than three hours to explore this fine city. The River Severn runs through the city and is overlooked by the 12th century Worcester Cathedral. The site of the final battle of the Civil War between Oliver Cromwell and King Charles II was here. It is also the home of Royal Worcester Porcelain, and the birthplace of the composer Sir Edward Elgar.
Our steam train leaves Worcester Shrub Hill in the late afternoon and returns to London Paddington by way of our outward route through the Cotswolds. We leave Worcester and head for Evesham along the single track line, currently being doubled beyond Evesham. Our steam locomotive will need to get up speed for the next section towards Honeybourne, where there is the commencement of a 5-mile climb, graded at 1 in 100 towards the summit at Campden. Easier grades then gradually descend towards Oxford, where we join the line from Banbury to Reading.
We shall now call at Didcot, Reading and Slough to set down passengers, before arriving in London Paddington.
Premier Dining includes a full English breakfast and a four course dinner silver served at your seat.
First Class includes morning coffee with a Danish pastry and afternoon tea with a savoury dish followed by a selection of fancies and cakes.
Standard Class includes a reserved seat at a table for four.
A buffet car is available and serves tea, coffee, snacks and light refreshments. Tables for two can be guaranteed in first class and premier dining for a supplement of £22 per person. (subject to availability)
Approximate timings shown