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Exploring the World’s Most Iconic Railway Engines in York

Exploring the World’s Most Iconic Railway Engines in York

Steam engines were once one of the most graceful yet powerful symbols of the industrial age. Powerful locomotive engines with a winning combination of speed and beauty. So it’s no wonder they still fascinate us now but if you visit the National Railway Museum in York you can add in an opportunity to see over 100 engines including the world’s fastest steam train (The Mallard), the Shinkansen Bullet Train or even a replica of Stephenson’s Rocket.

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But visit this October half term (21 Oct to 5 Nov) and you’ll be treated to an even bigger ‘roadschooling opportunity’. Our girls loved the chance to experience the ‘Future Engineers‘ programme that’s full of fun and fascinating workshops for the whole family and interactive activities to ignite imaginations.

Even better is the fact that the whole day’s visit costs nothing as the National Railway Museum is still free to enter. Great news for us as it allowed us the chance to take the girls for a new Caribbean food experience at Turtle Bay in Stonegate.

From their first glimpse of steam railways at a young age (when the girl’s grandparents took them on replica railways like Bekonscot, Herts , or the Santa Special at Wansford) the girls have loved the smell, sounds and sights of steam trains….. so York’s National Rail Museum seemed the obvious choice to find out more and add to our Science Roadschooling!

So where do you start in the Great Hall? Well there’s over 100+ locomotives to choose from, but   the chance to sit inside the cab of the famous Mallard was just to good to pass up…. whilst the new  ‘Mallard Experience‘ provides a chance to feel what the Mallard’s world steam speed record attempt must have felt like as you rushed towards the Collyweston Bends (see here).

There’s well over 300 years of fascinating history here . So you can grab the chance to explore other railway legends including the impressive Duchess of Hamilton, sit inside the only Japanese Bullet Train outside of Japan or be flabbergasted by the luxury of the Royal Trains.

But there’s also plenty of opportunities to learn too… from the working displays of  a turntable to the interesting exhibits that explain how steam engines work (see here for a great animated explanation on steam engines).

before you go check out the special events

If that’s not enough, it’s added to during half term with the activities in the Future Engineers that include : Expressive Forces, Streamlined Design or Under Pressure… or you can even hang around to chat to real-life engineers in the Engineering Hub or Engineer Like Me. (see full programme here)
Our girls absolutely loved the Caribbean spirit not to mention the chance to try Caribbean classics such as jerk BBQ or curried beef cheeks with coconut rice and peas. All surrounded by a  restaurant that resembles a colourful shack with graffiti-laden walls, reggae beats, copious amounts of Limeade and Red Stripe, and great passion pie to finish!

national railway museum york

turtle bay york

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About The Author

Richard

Ever wanted to pack your bags, just jump in a motorhome and go off and explore Europe as a family? Well, that’s exactly what my family has done since September 2015. Visiting 35 European countries, travelling over 54,000 miles and grabbing over 450 family experiences on the way… enjoying Bobsleigh in Norway, Climbing into Mt Etna in Sicily or Kayaking the River Dordogne.

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