Driver Experience Packages at Bressingham:
We offer many great opportunities to have a go at driving a steam engine in 2017 and beyond.
There are SIX packages to choose from. All experiences are One on One unlike many other heritage railways where experiences are shared with other participants.
Driver experience courses are only available in our open season. From the Easter Holidays until the end of October.
These are all great to buy as gifts for those steamy people in your life!
Package No.1: 15" Gauge Railway Half Day Steam Driver Experience:
You will be one on one with the driver, as participants you will help clean and prepare the loco before firing it up and taking it for a spin. This is a half day experience. Participants will drive 4-5 circuits of the 1.5 mile railway on this experience.
This course tends to be operated weekdays and out of school holidays.
The cost for a half day is: £150
Package No.2: Full Day 2’ Quarry Slate Train Driver Experience:
Bressingham Steam Museum in Norfolk is offering visitors the chance to drive on the 1.5 mile 2 ft gauge Fen Railway using either 1909 built quarry Hunslet saddle tank loco 'George Sholto' or Quarry Hunslet 'Gwynedd' built in 1883.
In keeping with what the engine was originally designed for, the train will not consist of the usual rake of carriages but a collection of 4 wheeled slate wagons. These are all period vehicles, originally from the Ffestiniog Railway and restored at Bressingham. In addition to all the normal challenges of driving a steam locomotive, participants will face the extra test of keeping a train of unbraked, loose coupled wagons under control.
The cost for a Full day Slate Train Experience is: £195
Package No.3: Full day Traction Engine
Choose to spend a day driving either ‘Bunty’ a Garrett Steam Tractor No. 34641. Reg. mark CF 5913, built in 1924 or ‘Buster’a Burrell Steam Roller No. 3993. Reg. mark CF 5646 also built in 1924.
This experience will involve the whole process of preparing the engine, getting up steam, spending the day driving around the museum site before putting the engine to bed. Participants will be accompanied and guided by an experienced driver.
The cost for a this full day is: £250
Package No.4: The Ultimate Steam Experience. 2 Day Course:
This experience is extremely limited with only 4 places available at each course.
4th & 5th September, 16th & 17th October 2017.
This package is a special 2 day experience where you will be accompanied and guided by an experienced driver, providing the unique opportunity to drive 3 steam locomotives of various gauges along with either a Traction Engine or Road Roller.
You will spend half a day driving each engine with the added experience of preparing an engine each morning. The experience offers you the chance to drive some of the following (Subject to the availability of the engine).
1: The Fen Railway: 2ft Gauge Steam Locomotive
Engine: Either Hunslet Quarry locomotive ‘George Sholto’ No. 994 built in 1909 or Bressingham built ‘Bevan’ an engine of independent design based on the Kerr Stuart ‘Wren’ class locomotive. During this experience you will be hauling a set of passenger coaches or slate wagons restored from the Ffestiniog Railway.
2: The Waveney Line Railway: 15” Gauge Steam Locomotive
Engine: ‘St Christopher’ a 2-6-2T locomotive built in 2001 by Exmoor Steam Railway.
3: The Garden Line Railway: 10 ¼” Gauge Steam Locomotive
Engine: ‘Alan Bloom’ No1. a 0-4-0 saddle tank locomotive modelled on the Hunslet Engine quarry design, built in 1995 by Bressingham Chief Engineer Philip Gray. During this experience you will be hauling a set of passenger coaches.
4: Steam Tractor or Steam Roller
Engine: Either ‘Bunty’ a Garrett Steam Tractor No. 34641. Reg. mark CF 5913, built in 1924 or ‘Buster’a Burrell Steam Roller No. 3993. Reg. mark CF 5646 also built in 1924.
The cost for ‘The Ultimate Steam Experience’ 2 Day Course: £395
Further information for the 2 Day Course:
1) The above experience is available to fit persons aged over 18 on the day of their experience.
2) On arrival the guest driver will meet the team and you will be given a safety briefing and we will make sure that you are well prepared.
3) The day will begin at 8:00 and end between 4:00 & 5:00.
4) The small size of our narrow gauge locos means that only one visitor can be on the locomotive at a time, so our Driver Experience trains really are exclusive - the whole of each trip is yours.
5) Coal-fired steam locomotives are confined and relatively dirty places on which to work and travel. The guest driver should therefore wear suitable footwear (steel capped shoes/boots - if at all possible) and some form of protective overall (a non-nylon boiler suit or "bib and brace").
6) Lunch and refreshments will be provided for the participants and up to 2 guests.
7) The participant on the course can have up to 2 complimentary guests accompanying them. They will be able to enjoy all the delights of Bressingham with plenty of opportunities for them to see and photograph the participant on their driving course. We regret however that it is not permissible for passengers to be carried on these experience courses. Any further guests accompanying the course participant will be an extra cost at a special price of £9 per guest to cover extra food and refreshment costs.
8) To ensure the success of the day, a simple Medical Questionnaire will need to be completed. Good eyesight (with glasses if required) and hearing are obviously important, as is the ability to climb into and out of the cab!
9) In the event that an engine listed above or a railway is unavailable for service then the museum will offer the use of another operational steam engine as part of the experience.
Package No.5: Half Day Martello Standard Gauge
A new package for 2017:
A half day driving experience on Martello 662 our standard gauge terrier tank engine. The Locomotive will then remain in passenger service for the remainder of the day. Available dates are shown within the booking system (Tends to be Sundays).
Participants will spend the morning with the Driver and Fireman learning all about the engine. Participants will be involved with the preparation of the engine: oiling up, starting the fire and shovelling coal to build up pressure. Once at running pressure participants will spend the rest of the morning driving and firing the engine under instruction along Bressingham's 1/4 mile Standard Gauge Line. Experience will include approximatley an hour and a half 'drive time'.
For the majority of this experience participants will be driving 'light engine'.
You will be the only candidate on the footplate accompanied by our experienced Driver and Fireman.
The day starts at 7.30am ends at 12:00pm.
The cost for a half day is: £225
Package No.6: Full Day Martello Standard Gauge
A new package :
A full day driving experience on Martello 662 our standard gauge terrier tank engine. Available dates are shown within the booking system (Tends to be Mondays).
Partcipants will spend the morning with the Driver and Fireman learning all about the engine. Participants will be involved with the preparation of the engine: oiling up, starting the fire and shoveling coal to build up pressure. Once at running pressure partcipants will spend the morning driving and firing the engine under instruction along Bressingham's 1/4 mile Standard Gauge Line.
In the afternoon participants will be involved with some shunting, and will eventually couple up with a wagon and a Brake Van, learning about vacuum braking systems and spend the remainder of the afternoon hauling these wagons up and down the line.
At around 4pm the participant will assist the crew in putting the engine to bed.
You will be the only candidate on the footplate with our experienced Driver and Fireman.
The day starts at 7.30am
The cost for this full day is: £425
If any of the above experiences appeal to you then contact the museum office on 01379 686900 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. Courses are provided on a pre-booked basis only.