A firm favourite amongst Peterborough residents and tourists alike, Railworld Wildlife Haven is a quirky gem that has plenty to offer this coming winter...
Railworld Wildlife Haven is a magical combination of some of the best bits the Nene Valley has to offer – a beautiful green space, carefully curated to showcase not just natural highlights
like plants and trees, but the skills of the volunteers for whom creativity is a priority. Thus you have areas such as the Mediterranean Garden, a tiny slice of Italianate heaven filled with grape vines, olive trees and classical-style statues, an amazing place to relax and catch a little ‘holiday in a bottle’ to boot!
The reserve is also famous for its miniature railway, an incredible labour of love begun by volunteer Bob Clarke in 2012, which takes the location’s steam and rail heritage as its inspiration. Other nods to the classic world of steam and locomotives are the bird hide signal box and various renovation projects, undertaken by a group of dedicated volunteers.
Not just a great destination for the many cultural and heritage treasures you’ll find here, Railworld Wildlife Haven also plays host to events throughout the year. Coming up this winter, on Saturday, 2 December, the Haven is pleased to welcome the Repair Café for the day. This is one of several such community initiatives across the country that enables people to hold on to broken or damaged items that are expensive to replace, still have plenty of life left in them or have sentimental value by getting them repaired – and the best bit is it’s free! Clothes, bikes, electrical appliances, toys and more are all regularly given a new lease of life by the expert volunteers at Repair Café events, and if you have any handy skills you could lend to the project they would be more than happy to hear from you. These repair sessions are very popular, so booking is advised – check out Peterborough Repair Café’s Facebook page @peterboroughrepaircafeuk
And of course, no festive season would be complete without a visit from Santa! On the weekends of 9 and 10 December, and 16 and 17 December, visitors can follow the reindeer trail all the way to Father Christmas’s grotto to spend time with the big man himself, as well as enjoy the regular attractions the Haven has to offer. Costs are £5 per child plus the regular entrance fee.
To find out more about Railworld Wildlife Haven this Christmas and beyond, visit railworld.org.uk