Friday 21 April 2023

Vintage Trains 'Merrymaker' Excursions

Vintage Trains, the 21st century’s only charitably-controlled train operating company, is back where it belongs – at speed, on the main line. The company have enhanced their rail experience with a high-quality dining experience, varied menus, authentic Pullman coaches and 75mph of record-breaking speed up hills and racing by castles.

Passengers are whisked away by the smell of freshly-cooked bacon and eggs on the great British breakfast or sip a glass of Champagne over a four course dinner, all on a steam-hauled, old fashioned express train!

The latest addition to their programme is the revival of the 1960's day trips to seaside resorts, great events and historic cities. Class 37 37403 Isle of Mull is scheduled to pull the excursions.

The original day trip concept was the use of rakes of spare coaches kept for basic weekend trips to the seaside and other places of interest. In steam days in the north, mixed traffic engines such as Black Fives, K3's and B1's would head up the trains and when diesels came on the scene Class 20's, 24's, 31's, 37's and 40's would be allocated.

Isle of Mull was manufactured in the world-famous Vulcan Foundry in Lancashire, it was numbered D6607, then 37307, and subsequently 37403. A member of the /4 series, it was initially an Eastfield (Glasgow) machine, before transferring to Motherwell, and ending its mainline career based in toton, in the East Midlands.

Now part of the fleet maintained in Bo’ness in Scotland, it is owned by SRPS, and is a well-loved member of this class.

The planned route of the first Merrymaker on 3rd June, can be found here together with access to the main Vintage trains website