The Cotton Mill Express

Saturday 29th February 2020


Prices from: £99


Join us on this interesting and varied tour around the cotton mill towns of Lancashire and Yorkshire.


Departure Date: 29-Feb-2020
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Join us on this interesting and varied tour around the cotton mill towns of Lancashire and Yorkshire. There will be rugged scenery in abundance as we traverse the Pennines, and also some very steep gradients to climb, providing a good workout for our steam locomotive, taken from the Carnforth pool of locomotives.

The Cotton Mill Express picks up in Lancaster, Preston and Wigan before we reach Manchester Victoria, known as Cottonopolis at the heart of the cotton industry. We make our way eastwards, via the steep climb of Miles Platting Bank, towards Stalybridge and take the old London & North Western Trans Pennine line over the Pennines via Standedge Tunnel to Huddersfield. With steep gradients aplenty, and wide Pennine valleys to enhance the ruggedness, our steam locomotive will be working hard all the way.

After passing through Huddersfield, we will take the Bradley Wood Curve towards Brighouse, where we will pause for water. We now head westwards through the Calder Valley, with its steep sides all the way to Hall Royd Junction, where we leave the Manchester line and commence the steep climb to Copy Pit Summit. Once over the summit, there are then a long string of mill towns that follow our route through to Burnley and Accrington before we reach Blackburn.

Leaving Blackburn, we run via Bamber Bridge and Chorley to Bolton and then onwards to Manchester Victoria once again. We continue to make another climb up Miles Platting Bank and head for Huddersfield once again for our second circuit of the Pennines to Brighouse. After taking water at Brighouse, we continue along the Calder Valley again but take the Manchester line at Todmorden and run via Rochdale to Manchester Victoria, where we call to set down passengers.

Our final leg of the journey will retrace our outward steps back to Lancaster via Wigan and Preston, to conclude what promises to be an unusual tour of the Pennines and its former cotton mill towns.

Train Fares

Fares Adult Junior Family
Premier £259 £175 £781
First £159 £102 £471
Standard £99 £70 £303

Premier Dining includes a full English breakfast and four course dinner silver served at your seat.

First Class includes morning tea or coffee with a bacon/breakfast roll and a Danish pastry and an afternoon service of tea or coffee with a savoury of the day followed by a scone with butter and jam.

Standard Class includes a reserved seat usually at a table for four.

Tables for two can be guaranteed in first class and premier dining for a supplement of £25 per person (subject to availability).

A buffet car is available and serves tea, coffee, snacks and light refreshments.

Train Timings

Approximate timings shown

Station Outward Return
Lancaster 07:50 19:40
Preston 08:20 18:45
Wigan North Western 08:40 18:25
Manchester Victoria 09:40 17:40
Blackburn 12:40 13:30