Railway impresses with fancy dress express

Spooky passengers on the ghost train
Spooky passengers on the ghost train

Creepy capers and fiendish family fun were just the ticket on the Marston Vale Line as the Ghost Train rolled into town.

The Fancy Dress Express was busy with a large number of children in an amazing variety of spooky costumes on Wednesday.

The train was suitably decorated for the occasion and all children in fancy dress were given a themed goody bag packed with games and puzzles.

A local face painter and balloon modeller were also hard at work to keep everyone entertained during their journey.

Stephen Sleight, Marston Vale Community Rail Partnership Officer, said, “The Ghost Train is a popular event in the Community Rail Partnership calendar. We had one of our best events yet with four lively trains, and many families taking the opportunity to travel on the Marston Vale Line & visit Ridgmont Station Heritage Centre for the first time. A number of regular passengers enjoyed a journey home with a difference too!”

The special service was arranged by the Marston Vale Community Rail Partnership in association with London Midland. All of the activities on the train were provided free of charge making it an ideal event for half-term!

A team of seven volunteers were on hand to assist passengers, distribute event packs (including a colouring competition – first prize a ride in the driver’s cab on the Marston Vale Line!) and sell refreshments. Members of the team travelled from as far afield as Wellingborough and Brackley.

Many passengers took the opportunity to visit Ridgmont Station Heritage Centre during their journey.

The building was a hive of activity with children engrossed in special craft activities in the

Meeting Room, souvenirs being sold in the Gift Shop, Marston Vale Line information being collected from the Tourist Information Point, volunteers showing visitors around the Restored Booking Office and a Spooky Menu being served in the Tea Room!

Terry Oliver, London Midland Head of West Coast Mainline services said, “London Midland is proud to have supported this fantastic event. 

“It was a brilliant day and the kids really enjoyed it.  This railway really can bring the community together and the Marston Vale Community Rail Partnership works hard to achieve this.

“We look forward to working together again in the near future to deliver family-focused Christmas-themed services”.