South Devon’s ‘Hogwart’s Express Mk2’ venture voted a resounding success

AN EXPERIMENTAL ‘Hogwart’s Express’ , trialled by the South Devon Railway, has proved to be a resounding success.

The line has been working with fellow Devon charity Hannahs (the Dame Hannah Rogers Trust) to see if it could collaborate by using SDR steam trains as part of the Illustrating Harry Potter exhibition at its Seale Hayne campus, near Newton Abbot, this summer and following, in some way, the concept of the train from J K Rowling’s books.

The South Devon Railway’s routemaster bus outside Hannahs Seale Hayne campus at Newton Abbott on ‘Magic Express’ duty. SDR
The South Devon Railway’s routemaster bus outside Hannahs Seale Hayne campus at Newton Abbott on ‘Magic Express’ duty. SDR

The two sites are nearly 10 miles apart, but the railway has its own red London Routemaster double-deck bus and so an outline plan was drawn up in March by Matt Newbury of Hannahs and the railway’s Dick Wood to provide a link.

Dubbed the ‘Magic Express’, visitors would arrive at Hannahs by bus to see the exhibition after a one-way steam train trip on the SDR, with a later return to Buckfastleigh, thereby providing a real-life historic transport experience.

Read more in Issue 220 of Heritage Railway

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