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A fantastic magical train ride (Cramore station Somerset)
Attractions in Somerset in general
Member Name: jenjade
Attractions in Somerset in general
Advantages: Lovely train ride, Friendly santa good gift, entertaining relaxing lovely photos
Disadvantages: Bit pricy but you get a lot for your money. better for young children under 5?
Well as it is Christmas, I thought a trip to visit Father Christmas was necessary for my darling daughter who is 6 years old. I thought is would be nice to go somewhere to see Santa as a group with some friends. I mentioned it to a few friends at work and they suggested going to Cramore (near Shepton Mallet) and going on Santa's train.
We looked into the train at Cramore and decided to give it ago. We booked for 10.30 am on Christmas Eve to get in the mood for Christmas. A work colleague booked the tickets online and a few days later, they arrived in the post the tickets had all the details we needed such as the price date etc. The seats on the train cost us £10.95 each which I originally though was a bit expensive but the train ride, Santa's grotto takes about 1 hour and 30 minutes, and it was very relaxed.
I hopped onboard the beautiful black steam train at 10.30 am on Christmas Eve and joined my friend who was already seated. The train was a hustle of activity and everyone was very excited. I really liked the relaxing and exciting atmosphere onboard the train. The train was very comfortable and spacious. The seats were very comfortable and the train was very warm and clean. Onboard the train there were activity sheet and colouring pencils to keep the children amused while they waited for the train to set off.
As the train set off the ticket conductor appeared in a very smart uniform as requested tickets. I handed him our tickets and he punched them with a butterfly punch, which the kids though were great. It all felt a little bit like being on the polar express!
A few minutes after the train had started moving a clown came round and did a few tricks to amuse the children (and adults) then he blow every child a balloon model to keep with what every coloured balloons they choose. This was followed by shortcake tree biscuits for the children's, followed by minced pies for the adult with teas or coffees. I found the hot drinks very scary as there were young lads caring them up and down the train on tray above children's head, which was a huge health and safety aspect. There was also orange or blackcurrant for the children.
This kept use amused from the first stop through to the third stop where we could get off the train stretch our legs and take photos. The children were made very welcome to look around the stream train and have photos taken with the driver and conductors. It was all very special. I really loved the photo opportunities and them way the children were treated so well the whole time. All the staff was very polite and helpful. After a 10-minute stop, we boarded the train again and returned to the second stop where we were invited to see Santa in his grotto.
Different compartments of the train went to see Santa at different times. we were the last to see Santa as we walked up thought the train we could see all the other passengers who had been to see Santa. Most of them had opened there presents and they were of a very high standard. It looked like the young children 1-2 year had received lovely Rupert bear books. These books looked very high quality and have an audio cd with it. The boys aged 2-3 had a lovely set of toy cars. The box contained about eight cars off all sort of colours. The girls of this age had a fairy type set with tiara wings etc. Children 3-4 had a fishing game, which looked quite good.
We went into a first class booth to wait for a family who were in with Santa to come out. The young lad who showed us into the booth was very polite and apologetic about us having to wait. We were waiting a few minutes before we were called through. The grotto looked nice there were fairy light all over the roof and a small area with fake snow and a Christmas scene inside. Santa was sat on the back of his sledge he was a very happy chap and his suit and kit all looked very realistic. He had a very kind soft tone and asked the children what there names were, how old they were then remember there names and asked them individually what they would like him to bring later. He also asked if they had been good and were trying there best etc. We spend quite a long time in with Santa and were told we could take as many photo as we liked and not to rush as there was no hurry. The children took there gifts from Santa and we returned to our seat. My daughter opens her present, which was a nail art kit.
The train then returned to the station and we all got off the train. Santa walked through the train and waved and spoke to the children he got off the train first and remained on the platform with the children. I really liked this as some of the children really liked him and asked him questions about the reindeers etc.
At the platform, there was a fake snow machine so the children ran through the snow and tried to catch the snow etc. This was a lovely end to the trip.
I would highly recommend a ride on the Santa express mainly for young boys, as they seemed to enjoy it the most. I think my daughter was getting a little to old for this but I am still glad we did it. The Santa train is a lovely realistic way to see a happy friendly Santa. The whole trip took an hour and a half and was very relaxing.
East Somerset railway station run train rides all year round but I have never been on one of those so this is based on the Santa special.
Information from the website http://www.eastsomersetrailway.com/page.php?pid=51
Santa specials will run at 10:30, 12:15, 14:00 and 15:45 on the following dates -
Sat 6th and Sun 7th December - £8.95
Sat 13th and Sun 14th December - £9.95
Fri 19th December - £9.95
Sat 20th and Sun 21st December - £10.95
Tue 23rd and Wed 24th December - £10.95
Address - East Somerset Railway
Cranmore Railway Station
Telephone - 01749 880417
Summary: A magical train ride as close as you can get to the polar express!!
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