On Saturday 6 September (I know – that was ages ago - I have a lot of catching up to do!) we treated ourselves to a sausage sandwich for brunch to last us through the day, and set of on the walk to Shenton Station to catch the train.
We bought our tickets (£10 each for as many trips on the train you can fit in on a day!) and had a drink on the platform whilst waiting for the train.
Near enough on time there was a blast on the train whistle as it approached the station, and there was a flurry of train spotters (including me) with cameras ready!
The train stopped at the station, and loads of people got off – ready to watch the engine un-couple from the front of the train and move onto the back!
Everybody that was travelling then got on the train, and with another whistle, it pulled away.
Gary being a seasoned railwayman made straight for the First Class Lounge Bar Carriage and ordered us some liquid refreshment!
It was difficult taking pictures out of the window – as I kept getting soot in my eyes!
We passed several “restoration projects” and the train stopped at Market Bosworth Station to pick up more passengers and after about 25 minutes we arrived at Shackerstone Station.
Everyone got off the train, and again the engine had to be un-coupled and moved to the front.
After topping up the firebox with coal, and a few checks on the wheels and things (the “wheel tapper” in action) the new load of passengers were on their way with another blast of the whistle and loads of smoke and steam!
We decided to walk over to the festival site before looking around the station any more – as we had to be back for the last train at 4.15pm!
We had a slow walk past all the historic boats, had a chat to Mark on fuel boat Callisto to find out when he would be passing us on his way back, and walked past some of the other festival goers boats too!
As you can see, there were a lot of boats squeezed into the space!
We didnt go into the festival site itself, but did look through the gate to watch some “jousting”!
Feeling the need for some edible refreshment, we returned to the station to visit the Victorian Tea Shop!
After a pot of tea and some lovely carrot cake and lemon cake we had a further look around the station and museum.
An extra treat was the Blue Circle Steam Engine doing a special showing!
By now it was near 4pm, so we made our way to the platform to wait for the train and just then the air display at the festival started, so we watched the breathtaking manoeuvres of the 3 planes!
As you can see, the train pulled in as the display ended, and started its usual routine to move the engine to the front of the train.
Again more coal was added to the firebox – it must be hot up there!
Then all too soon it was time to get on board for our trip back, with more whistle blowing we pulled out of the station, passing the engine sheds, where another engine was being restored, and the signal box.
At Shenton Station I didnt want to leave until getting yet another shot of lots of steam from the engine!
We walked back to the boat exhausted from such a fun packed day!