Watercress Line steaming towards its Spring Steam Gala

The Watercress Line’s popular Spring Steam Gala returns from Friday 29th April to Monday 2nd May with a Goods Train theme.

A range of heritage locomotives, from heavy goods to local freight, will be on show, as well as fascinating tours and restoration exhibitions at the stations.

Visitors can enjoy a journey into a bygone era with home-fleet and guest steam locomotives running along the Watercress Line’s 10 mile line throughout the four days.

There will be two visiting locomotives – GWR 28xx2857 designed for heavy goods trains, courtesy of Severn Valley Railway and LMS 8F 48305, courtesy of Great Central Railway, Leicestershire.

The Watercress Line’s home-fleet will include the fast freight S15 Class 506 and 30925 ‘Cheltenham’ – a powerful 4-4-0 type locomotive used for goods and passengers. Local goods train 7F 53808 will also run, courtesy of Somerset & Dorset Railway Trust.

There will be an enhanced timetable of steam locomotives allowing guests to hop on and off any train to explore the heritage stations along the way. 

The Spring Steam Gala will feature ‘behind the scenes’ tours at Ropley Station’s workshop and yard. There will also be society stalls and displays at Ropley.

The new museum at the Old Goods Shed at Alresford Station will give a fascinating glimpse of Somerset and Dorset Railway Trust artefacts to visitors. At Medstead & Four Marks Station, the Goods Shed will have the ‘Delivering the Goods’ exhibition and, in the sidings, on Saturday 30th April and Sunday 1st May, Wickham Trolley rides will be on offer.

The Watercress Line’s Acting Managing Director Alison Houghton said: “The four day Spring Steam Gala is an extremely popular event for fans of steam railways.

“There will be plenty to see and do, so don’t miss out – please book your tickets in advance.”

For more information and to book tickets, please visit www.watercressline.co.uk  

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