THE Lapland Express is arriving this Christmas at the Downpatrick and County Down Railway for four weekends only with a very special passenger – Santa Claus!
Railway chairman John Wilson revealed Santa’s itinerary saying: “He’ll have travelled in style onboard his own steam train – the Lapland Express – to greet scores of children.”[caption id="attachment_44798" align="alignleft" width="390"] Santa gets ready for the Christmas special in Downpatrick.[/caption]
Mr Wilson added: “Although the details of his trip are tightly guarded secrets looked after by the Elfin Safety Executive, it is his understanding that kids eager to meet the jolly big man in the red outfit will be invited everyone to join Santa Claus for some festive fun on the Christmas train
“Once the steamer has arrived at the Loop Platform, Santa will invite everyone to join him over in his travelling workshop – the carriage where he makes all the toys for all the little boys and girls. Here, they will get to speak one-to-one with Santa and tell him what they wanted for Christmas.”
The steam train will be leaving the railway station for the following weekends, 30th November & 1st, 7th & 8th, 14th & 15th, 21st & 22nd December.
Santa will also be providing his guests refreshments on the buffet coach, and doors open from 2pmtill 5pm.
Fares are £6 for adults, £9 (including present) children over three years old, and £5.50 under-threes plus senior concession. This includes a present from Santa, as well as the train fare.
Admission to see Santa in his workshop is also dependant on children having been good throughout the year.
Mr Wilson also advises that it will not be possible to board the train at Inch Abbey Station, due to the route the train will be taking and said: “Don’t forget, this is an outdoor event so please wear appropriate clothing.”
And after Christmas Day is over, you can steam into the New Year with the railway’s popular Mince Pie Specials onSaturday, 28th December.
“The Downpatrick and County Down Railway is your guaranteed sanctuary from turkey sandwiches,” joked Mr. Gardiner.
“Mince or apple pies are available from our buffet car on New Year’s Day, after relaxing on board a heritage train coasting through the County Down countryside as a well as a wee glass of something to refresh you.”
For further information on events – or if you are thinking about joining as a volunteer – log on to the railway’s website at
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