The Somerset Explorer charity train event


GWR, Visit Somerset and Buses of Somerset invite you to a special charity event to celebrate the life and work of Bob Smart, the former chairman of Visit Somerset who sadly passed away last year. Bob was the driving force in helping visitors and residents to explore the wonders of Somerset by highlighting tourism, heritage and realising projects to increase Somerset’s profile. We at GWR will always be thankful for the strong relationship Bob built with us at GWR and the work he did.

On Saturday 13 May 2017 “The Somerset Explorer” will offer three separate options for the traveller, ranging from a fun filled land cruise across Somerset to a classic train journey from London Paddington to Minehead via Frome. The special service will be formed by a pair of 1976 HST Powercars hauling our classic MK3 carriages and will run via Frome on the outward journey before returning to London Paddington via Weston Super Mare.

Whilst On-board there will opportunities to explore the wonders of Somerset and you will be able to purchase souvenirs of the day and the Great Western buffet car will be open selling a full range of items.

All profits from the day will be donated to the Weston Hospice. On the return journey, there will be a presentation at Weston-super-Mare prior to departure. With thanks to Guy, David along with the team at GWR we are pleased to offer our readers a discount to attend. Just enter LTM6.50 in the promotion code box to gain the discount or if there’s at least two of you, select the group ticket priced at £50pp saving £16.50pp.

There are 3 different ways to experience The Somerset Explorer:

The Train Only Option:

Depart: London Paddington 08:36 with pick-ups at Ealing Broadway 08:44, Reading 09:14, Didcot Parkway 09:34

Arrive: Minehead 13:00

Depart: Minehead 14:50

Arrive: Didcot Parkway 18:03, Reading 18:19, Ealing Broadway 18:46, London Paddington 18:57

Train and Coach – The Land Cruise Option:

On arrival at Frome you will disembark and board either a luxury coach or open top bus on a mystery land cruise to Weston Super Mare taking in some of the most spectacular locations Somerset has to offer. If you would like to take the land cruise option, please contact the event orgainser via the link to reserve your seat on the coach.

You will re-join the charter train at Weston Super Mare for the return journey to London Paddington.

Depart: London Paddington 08:36 with pick-ups at Ealing Broadway 08:44, Reading 09:14, Didcot Parkway 09:34.

Arrive: Frome 10:33

Depart: Weston Super Mare 17:00

Arrive: Didcot Parkway 18:03, Reading 18:19, Ealing Broadway 18:46, London Paddington 18:57

The Road from Westbury:

If you are not from the Eastern end of the GWR network, fear not! In Partnership with Buses of Somerset we will be providing a “Part Fare” option for those still wishing to travel to the West Somerset Railway. We have organised for your ticket to be valid on the 08:36 departure from Swindon via Trowbridge and the 18:32 return from Westbury to Swindon along with the 18:40 departure to Frome and a dedicated coach service to connect into the charter at Frome from the following locations:

Depart: Westbury Station Forecourt 09:30, Dilton Marsh Station 09:45

Arrive: Frome Station 10:15 – To connect into the charter departing at 10:37

Depart: Weston Super Mare 16:55 to Westbury (For onward connections)

Arrive: Westbury Station Forecourt: 18:25, Dilton Marsh Station 18:45

– Connections at Westbury for Swindon departing at 1832 & Weymouth via Frome departing at 18:40.

Tickets: Purchase your Somerset Explorer charity charter ticket here:

# NOTE: We as GWR cannot be held liable for any “other” connections that customers maybe using in order to travel on this special charter service, we aim to fulfil the entire itinerary as listed, however this maybe dependant to conditions on the day. In order to travel on any part of this charter you must be possession of a VALID charter ticket for the portion of the journey you intend to travel on.

Tickets will NOT be available on the day and MUST be purchased online and printed before travel or be presented via the Eventbrite app.

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