Steam Train Journeys on the Cathedrals Express

Travel back in time on the Cathedrals Express steam train

This is one of the experiences that covers a large area of the UK, using a variety of departure locations and an excellent mix of destinations, making the Cathedrals Express steam trips a very popular train journey at a mid price. There are also multi-day tours that you can take as short breaks.

Booking and buying any of these steam train journeys is also quite easy because you can buy a voucher and then sort out convenient times for yourself, giving lots of flexibility on where and when you want to travel.

You also get a choice of the style in which you want to travel: there is Pullman style dining, Premier dining, first-class with picnic boxes or standard class.

Departures and Destinations

Throughout the year you can find the Cathedral Express running to and through towns in the north, south, east, west and middle of the UK, including the Midlands. Many of these take in the sights of England's cathedral cities, coastal towns and castles; for example Canterbury, Cambridge, Norwich, York, Warwick, Weymouth, Stratford-upon-Avon, Worcester.

You can find a full list of departures at all the stations, together with the Cathedral express destinations, when you visit the various websites that provide voucher purchasing options.


Carriages and level of service

The train uses a variety of rolling stock carriages, rescued and restored over the years to give a mixture of first-class, dining and standard passenger service.

For those of you wanting a luxury journey the Cathedral express offers a Pullman style dining experience where you are surrounded by refurbished carriages in 1950s style, with comfy seats, antique table lamps and wood panelled walls. On the journey you can look forward to champagne, canapes, four course meals and complimentary half bottles of wine.

Of course, just to remind you that you are on a steam train, you can always pop your head out of the corridor window to get a smell of that wonderful smoke and steam mixture (perhaps after your mealn !).

These steam excursions also offer the possibility of using the vintage dining cars, by reserving a table and paying a supplement to have breakfast, brunch and/or a four course meal on the return journey.

In first-class travel, as in the past, you can look forward to a welcome drink of champagne together with bar service and complimentary tea and coffee throughout your journey, with various snacks and small treats on the return journey. Picnic boxes can also be pre-ordered.


Locomotives in use

Typically the steam locomotives used to haul the Cathedral Express are chartered from various steam societies, collections and functioning steam railways.

As an example you could see any of the following at the front of your train journey:

Black Five 44932: designed as a multipurpose engine for both passenger and freight work.

Britannia 70000: returning to the main line after an overhaul in 2010.

6024 King Edward I: a GWR locomotive to use on passenger express trains and occasionally to transport Royalty !

70013 Oliver Cromwell: this locomotive hauled the British Rail last steam train in 1968

34067 Tangmere: a Battle of Britain class locomotive restored to use in 2003

60163 Tornado: a brand-new engine resulting from a 19 year project, featured on Top Gear recently and in a BBC documentary, frequently running on the East Coast main line to York.