Since 2012 the numbers of passengers carried by the Epping Ongar Railway has increased every year and in 2014 reached an all time high. This year is also the 150th Anniversary of the opening of the line from Loughton to Ongar the Railway. In this year, to ensure that the trend continues, the Railway is planning an exciting range of special events throughout the years.
Throughout the last year, the Railway also benefited from the support of over 350 volunteers giving an average of 23 days each.
Roger Wright, Managing Director said,
“I am chuffed that the Railway has continued to grow in 2014 and thankful to our passengers and our volunteers for the support that they have given to the Railway. We look forward to welcoming many of our passengers back in 2015.”
The Railway has also announced its running schedule for 2015 which includes a few new events (2). This year’s season starts with ‘Kids for a Quid’ in the February half term holiday. After that, the Railway will be open every weekend, Bank Holiday and Wednesdays during the School Holidays from Easter until 1 November. At the end of April the Railway will be celebrating its 150th Anniversary with one or possibly two visiting locomotives. There will be a larger community-based celebration at the end of August with a distinctly Victorian theme to the occasion.
Dean Walton, Business Development Manager for the Railway said,
“We are looking forward to attracting even more passengers with what we think is an exciting range of events. However it is also important for us to attract passengers on our other weekends. With our friendly and helpful volunteers and our buses, steam and diesel services we think we provide an excellent day out for the family every weekend. The continuing increase in the numbers since we re-opened in 2012 supports this.”
The Railway is also expanding its range of evening specials, with its named dining trains(3) and two Murder Mystery experiences(4). The Epping Fryer offers Fish & Chips, the Cockney Sparrow offers Pie & Mash and the Poppadom Priaire offers a curry meal. The Murder Mystery events will be performed by a group of professional actors in May and September.
Glynis Campbell, Catering Manager said:
“In 2014 we successfully extended the range of food we sell at North Weald. This year we are pleased to extend the number and range of evening dining trains we are running. We buy our food from local suppliers and support the local economy in this way. We expect our Murder Mystery events to be very popular and encourage people to book these as soon as the tickets are released.”
(1) For further information about the event please contact Dean Walton by email firstname.lastname@example.org
(2) Our special events in 2015:
14,15,18,21,22 February, Kids for a Quid
3-6 April, Easter Egg Hunt
18-19 April, Spring Diesel Gala
24-26 April, 150th Anniversary Weekend
2-3 May, PaddingtonTM visits
5-7 June, Steam Gala
13-14 June, 1940s weekend
31 July -2 August, Real Ale Festival
8-9 August, Peppa Pig Visits the Railway
22-23 August, Mixed Traction Weekend
29-31 August, 150th Anniversary Celebration and Victorian Bank Holiday Weekend
13 September, Classic Car Rally
19-20 Autumn, Diesel Gala
30-31 October, Steam & Scream Halloween Specials
5,6,12,13,19,20,22,23,24 December, Santa Specials
27,28,31 December, Mince Pie Specials
1-2 January 2016, New Year Gala
(3) Evening Dining Trains
16 May and 26 August, The Epping Fryer offering Fish & Chip supper
20 June and 5 August, The Cockney Sparrow offering Pie & Mash supper
18 July and 26 September, The Poppadum Prairie offering with a Curry Night!
(4) Murder Mystery Trains
The performances are by professional actors provided by the The Company Upfront.
30 May – “Murder at the Manor” set in the 1930s.
12 September – “Murder, Rattle and Roll” set in the 1950s.