Return of Swindon Railway Festival announced

By Barrie Hudson - 27 May 2022

  • This year's festival honours late stalwart co-organiser Owen Rees Gibbon

    This year's festival honours late stalwart co-organiser Owen Rees Gibbon

The Swindon Railway Festival will be returning to Steam on the weekend of 10 and 11 September.

This year’s event will be held in memory of Owen Rees Gibbon, who along with his brother John, was instrumental in helping to organise the festival and attracted the best model railway layouts and demonstrators to the Swindon show over the last 21 years.

Steam Deputy Manager Ian Surtees said: “Due to the pandemic we have been unable to stage our popular Swindon Railway Festival event for the last two years. However, the museum is now looking forward to showcasing the finest model railway layouts and all things GWR once again.

“This year’s event will pay tribute to our dear friend Owen, who for many dedicated years worked with staff at STEAM to develop the Swindon Railway Festival and really brought the hobby to life. He will be sadly missed when the show returns in September, but we wanted to highlight the significant role he played in making our event everything it is today.

“More than 20 high quality model railway layouts will be part of this year’s event, all of which were specially selected by Owen before he sadly passed away last year. Among the layouts on show will be Monksbury (0 Gauge by Jon Hewlett) and The Parlour Railway (7mm scale by Peter Boyce)."

Exhibitors at the show will include trade stands selling model railway locomotives, kits and accessories, tools, railway books and gifts. Local and national heritage railway organisations will also attend the event.

Visitors to the festival can observe modelling demonstrations throughout the weekend and talk to specialist modellers who will be happy  to offer tips and advice on loco and wagon building, soldering and weathering techniques.

The event is also billed as a great opportunity to view Steam’s three new exhibitions for 2022: ‘High Voltage – Electrification of the Western Network’, ‘The Diesel Decades’ and ‘Changing Trains – the Journey from Broad Gauge to Standard Gauge’. The museum's refreshed displays explore the story of changes to train travel on the GWR network.

Family activities include the special children's interactive model railways, activity trails, and thought-provoking activities inside the museum. 

Admission prices are: £14.50 for adults, £9.70 for children, and £11 for students and seniors. Under threes go free. Family tickets are also available.

STEAM Season Ticket holders receive 10 per cent off the festival admission ticket price.

Tickets include entry to the event as well as admission to the museum.

The doors will be open between 10am and 5pm on both days of the festival and visitors are encouraged to book tickets in advance via

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