2018 Railtours - Update From Vintage Trains

From Vintage Trains
9 January 2018

Dear Passengers & Friends

Thank you for supporting Vintage Trains. It is unfortunate that we must write to you with the disappointing news that we will not be operating any trains in the first half of 2018.

As many of you will know, we have had aspirations to become our own Train Operating Company and take full control of our destiny for several years. We are well on our way to achieving this goal, but there are no shortcuts; the first passenger steam trains we anticipate being able to offer for sale to the public will be the Shakespeare Express season starting in early July, 2018. It is fitting that we will be able to celebrate the 20th year of operating the Shakespeare Express with our own train operating company.

You may have read in the railway press that our operator, WCR (West Coast Railway Company) announced that due to a shortage of crews they would not be able to operate our trains in 2018 and beyond. Despite this announcement, we have been in frequent dialogue with WCR. WCR had continued to plan and submit our train requests to Network Rail on our behalf, including those for the spring 2018 season which is why we advertised them. However, we have not received confirmation from WCR that they will operate these trains and, as it is now January, we do not feel it fair to keep our passengers waiting for news any longer. 

It is with a heavy heart that we have decided to cancel our spring 2018 programme and concentrate on forming our own train operating company and the Tyseley Loco Works business for the first half of the year. Once we receive our operating licence, we will begin to run our own trains, starting with the 2018 Shakespeare Express season and then the long-awaited inaugural runs for No: 7029 ‘Clun Castle’. After many thousands of hours of hard work to get ‘Clun’ ready, we share in your disappointment and frustration at the postponement of these trains.

When we have raised the necessary funds through our Vintage Trains Community Benefit Society fundraising and received our operating licence, we will announce our future railtours.

If you wish to find out more or purchase shares in Vintage Trains CBS, go to www.VintageTrains.co.uk/shares or click: 

We look forward to seeing you on board our trains and welcoming you into our Founders Club in 2018.

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