Free Time

Nene Valley Railway

Take a festive trip on a steam engine

One of the most popular family attractions in the Peterborough area at this time of year is a trip along the Nene Valley Railway.

The preserved railway line, running between Wansford and Orton Mere, sees Santa Special trains operating at weekends and some weekdays throughout December until Christmas Eve. The Santa experience starts at Wansford with a welcome from station staff, and entertainment is provided at weekends. There is a Santa’s grotto for children, and a chance to see a full-scale replica of Thomas the Tank Engine.

Families join the decorated Santa Special train for a 50-minute ride to Peterborough and its return. During the journey children will be served with a soft drink and sweets while adults will be offered a mince pie and an alcoholic or hot drink.

Santa will walk through the train during the journey to see the children again and to wish everyone the compliments of the season.

There will be plenty of time to take in the sights of the countryside, including the villages of Castor and Ailsworth, the River Nene and Ferry Meadows, and enjoy the experience of travelling in a steam train.

The first class carriage has always proved popular with its luxury service and the option of a buffet lunch.


These depend on the day you travel. Standard class fares are £10, £13 or £15, and first class £13.50, £16.50 or £19.50 per person. A booking fee of £2 is charged on the total amount.
Children under 12 months travel free but are not allocated a seat.

Booking and train times:

01780 782833/ 784444 or visit

Don’t miss:

Nene Valley Railway is also running a Winter Warmers service on January 1, 2 and 3. Departures from Wansford at 10.30am, 12.30pm and 2.30pm.

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