Members of the public are encouraged to save the dates 2 -10 June 2012 for Britain’s biggest rail celebration at the National Railway Museum – Railfest 2012.
The nine day celebration of Britain’s railways will see an enormous space the size of 11 football pitches bustling with an awe-inspiring line up of more than 50 locomotives including record-breaking historic and modern locomotives from the museum’s collection and visiting locomotives from across the UK. A wide variety of railway-related activities, attractions, sights, sounds and smells will add to the exciting atmosphere with the opportunity to get up close to the exhibits.
The festival will bring together over 30 record-breaking locomotives that have made their mark on rail history for being the fastest, strongest, first, last and oldest. Among the confirmed record-breaking attendees is holder of the record for the word’s fastest steam locomotive at 126mph, Mallard, the newest mainline steam locomotive in operation, Tornado, and the most powerful industrial tank engine built for use in the UK, Mardy Monster. The first steam locomotive to reach 100mph, Flying Scotsman, is also set to attend the event. The locomotive is currently undergoing major restoration work and will be on display to the public during Railfest with further work being carried out on Flying Scotsman after the event. Railfest 2012 will welcome the largest gathering of railway record breakers ever brought together in one place.
With key support from the leading rail magazine titles; RAIL, Steam Railway and Model Rail, the festival is expected to draw railway fans from far and wide.
Steve Davies, Director of the National Railway Museum, said:
“Our previous Railfest in 2004 celebrated the bicentenary of Britain’s railways and proved to be a huge success by attracting over 60,000 visitors. This year we hope to top this by providing an even bigger and better event. We’re certain that rail fans young and old will be well catered for and we look forward to making 2012 a year to remember at the National Railway Museum”
The action-packed event will invite visitors to get-up even closer to the exhibits and locomotives by climbing into the driver’s cab, taking a ride behind working engines of all sizes and speaking to inspiring railway characters. Hundreds of stalls, refreshment areas and live music will also add to the bustling and exciting atmosphere.
For a traintastic time at Railfest, families are encouraged to bring their Koko, Brewster and Wilson fans (whether young or old) to the Chuggington Activity Area. Every fan who visits the Depot will receive a special Chuggington book which links the animated favourites to their original vehicles (look out for two at Railfest!). Attendees are reminded to bring their camera as younger trainspotters will get the chance to dress up as one of the famous Chuggers.
Families can also get crafty with a Deltic and Brewster make-and-take activity and there will be a giant Wilson model made out of Megablocks with visitors having the chance to win a huge Chuggington prize by guessing the number of blocks used.
Need a break from the hustle & bustle of the event? The Family Chill-out Area is the perfect place top let off steam with a variety of train-themed TV shows on the big screen and a chance to play with Brewster and other toys in the special Chuggington Playspace.
Tickets can be bought by visiting nrm.org.uk/railfest2012* or on the day. Those wishing to attend the event are encouraged to buy their tickets in advance to fast-track their entry and avoid the queues. Ticket prices start at £8 for children aged 2-15 years and £13 for an adult. Family tickets and group offers are available. Railfest will be hosted in an outdoor area at the museum with entry to the rest of the museum remaining free to visitors during the 9 day event. For all the latest updates and announcements, visit nrm.org.uk/railfest2012 or sign-up to receive the museum’s email newsletter.
Please travel to Railfest by public transport. There will be no public parking during Railfest except for a limited number of level access spaces for blue badge holders. To book a level access space, call 0844 815 3139.
*Internet sales end midnight on Friday 1 June.