I have always loved trains and steam trains are my favourite. There aren’t a lot of steam trains left but thanks to enthusiasts and volunteers, a lot of trains are being renovated and run occasionally. This trip was booked as a treat for me and a friend. Here is the link to the experience. My husband had booked a Pullman Style dining which costs £ 279.00 per person plus £ 44.00 extra to get us a window table for 2. We had informed them that one of us was a vegetarian and one was a vegan so that they would have meals for us.
As the train approached the platform, I could feel everyone’s excitement and I got a little choked seeing this magnificent train. So the day started by taking lots of photos and videos as the train came on to the platform. We met some lovely crew and really enthusiastic volunteers. We set off with a glass of champagne followed by breakfast where the cereal was served in a cute cup.
This was followed by a vegan breakfast of toast, beans, vegan sausages, mushrooms, hash browns, fried tomato and avacado slices served with orange juice and tea. It was a pleasant breakfast which we enjoyed watching the lovely views outside the window.
We were encouraged to take photos and talk to the staff and volunteers who knew such a lot about the train. After breakfast we did not get the constant servings of tea and coffee and snacks that we have had in some train experiences. However, the lovely train, the helpful crew and the views to York made the journey pleasant. Being a food blogger I had high expectations of the service and food on the train so I was slightly disappointed but thought that the dinner may be better. As I was travelling Pullman I was looking forward to getting the best from this trip. But already I could see some flaws.
We got off at York where we had about three hours to explore the city. We had a lovely walk into town where my son told me a bit about town’s history. He also had a surprise treat for me and that was a ride on a pedicab. The pedicab was remarkably comfortable and easy to board and was driven by a lovely gentleman called John. His pedicab is a modern version of a rickshaw I would say. The weather was really windy on the day so the pedicab had a plastic weather proof covering and John had also provided us with a blanket to ensure we were comfortable. The ride in a pedicab gave me a unique experience during the short time we were in York. I managed to get a real sense of why York is such a historic place. John’s pedicab experience was perfect – lasting around an hour, he took us on a tour of York’s key historic sites, telling detailed stories along the way. John is a natural communicator and somehow managed to give us the history of York within the space of the tour. . I was amazed at John’s ability to tell stories, pedal and navigate simultaneously, especially as there were some unexpected road closures that he handled with aplomb. Thanks to my son, this was a perfect way to introduce me to York and I would recommend it if ever you are in York.
On the return journey we came back on a diesel train which we were aware of. I was very disappointed with the dinner for lots of reasons. First of all the crew must have forgotten that we only ate vegetarian and vegan food. The starters kept going past us with no options for us. The service and the calm ambiance we had over breakfast was gone and the staff seemed to be in a rush to serve dinner as some of us would be getting off in Peterborough. The soup served was a weird colour and we had to ask the waiter what it was we were eating and he didn’t have a clue!! We were given the menu after we asked several questions about our meal.
The main course was some quorn stuff with green beans.
The service was slow and my son missed out on the dessert as there was no vegan option.
We missed out on the cheese course, so we were handed a bag with some sad looking cheese and a few cracker biscuits, as we had to leave the train at Peterborough. We did mention our disappointment about the dinner to the crew when we were leaving the train. I would have preferred just sandwiches and scones or cake with tea rather than the half hearted served dinner. Maybe I should have just taken some farsi puris with me to have on the way back? Only joking!!
Overall, I really enjoyed the train journey going out to York in the steam train, where we sat in a luxurious carriage with lovely seats . However for what we paid for a day trip to York to travel in a Steam train it was very disappointing. I would advice anyone thinking of going on a steam train to just travel premium standard and take a picnic with them as the “Pullman Experience ” is just an illusion.
I leave you to decide if I you think I am being a bit unfair in my review.
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Disclaimer: This post was written by me to let my readers know about my experience on a Steam train. I was not paid or given any free samples by the company. The views and comments are mine and being shared for information.