CHRISTMAS will come early for youngsters travelling on the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway which is once again welcoming a very special visitor.

Throughout this month up to Christmas Eve, youngsters will be able to meet Santa on special trains from Toddington and at Winchcombe Station.

Travellers can catch the train from Cheltenham Racecourse for the trip by steam train to Winchcombe where they will find Father Christmas in his own specially created grotto in a railway carriage.

“It’s a bit like ‘Polar Express’,” said Colin Fewell, commercial director and ‘chief elf’ of the railway.

“Every youngster will get a Christmas present appropriate to their age while mums, dads, grannies and grandads can enjoy some refreshments in the Coffee Pot café on the station.”

Last year, the railway introduced Santa Specials running from Toddington station using a classic diesel railcar.

“This was great fun, with Santa chatting to the children as the train trundled through the countryside, over the spectacular Stanway Viaduct and on towards Laverton,” said Mr Fewell.

“It was a sell-out, so we are doing the same again this year.”

Tickets are said to be selling well and some trains are already sold-out so the railway is urging travellers to book quickly.

Visit for details and to book tickets.


CHRISTMAS TIMETABLE - Steam services will run from Cheltenham Racecourse to Winchcombe on Saturday and Sunday; Saturday, December 15, and Sunday, December 16; Friday, December 21; Saturday, December 22; Sunday, December 23, and Monday, December 24.

Diesel railcar services from Toddington will run Saturday, December 15; Sunday, December 16; Saturday, December 22; Sunday, December 23; and Monday, December 24.