Families and train buffs looking for a great day out over the festive period are being encouraged to take a trip back in time at Steam – Museum of the Great Western Railway.
The museum has been beautifully decorated for the festive season and online bookings are now open for the rest of the year.
Steam is open every day except Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day. The museum will be closed for essential maintenance between Monday, 11th January and Wednesday, 13th January 2021.
To limit overall visitor numbers, all visitors and Season Ticket holders need to book online in advance through the Steam website: www.steam-museum.org.uk
Recently recognised as a TripAdvisor Traveller’s Choice award-winner, Steam offers a great day out with something for everyone to enjoy. Housed in a restored Grade 2-listed railway building, the Swindon Borough Council-owned museum takes visitors on a journey into the heart of the Great Western Railway.
The award-winning displays celebrate the men and women who built, travelled on and operated the GWR, under the direction of Isambard Kingdom Brunel, the best known engineer of the Victorian period.
Councillor Dale Heenan, Swindon Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for the Town Centre, Culture and Heritage, said: “If families are feeling cooped up over Christmas and need a break then Steam is the perfect place to enjoy a COVID-secure visit.
“So if you want to see what it was like to be an engine driver, test your skills in the recreated GWR Signal Box or explore our excellent exhibitions then head on down to the museum for some fun over the festive season.”
Visitors to Steam will also be able to view the museum’s new special exhibitions for 2020, exploring the remarkable and unexpected services offered by the GWR.
‘Flying High’ glides through the history of railway aviation. ‘On the Buses’ takes a look at the GWR’s introduction of bus services in 1903 and uncovers the opportunities this presented for rail passengers to visit new and remote holiday destinations.
The Steam Shop also has a great range of gifts for anyone looking for any last-minute Christmas presents, from exclusive GWR clothing, to books and stocking fillers for children. Visitors are requested to pay by card in the Steam shop.
As Swindon has been classed as a Tier 2 (High Alert) area, people can only visit Steam with members of their household or support bubble, in line with government guidance. Visitors will also not be able to mix with people outside of their household or support bubble while inside the museum and must respect social distancing measures.
Hand sanitiser is available throughout the museum, and a one-way system is in place. As per Government guidelines, visitors will need to wear a face covering unless exempt.
Follow the Museum on Facebook and Instagram (@SteamMuseum), or Twitter (@Steam_Museum).