I don't know about where you are but the weather this last Sunday was shockingly dismal. It rained all day and was pretty cold too. Usually this would make us stay indoors but we had been gifted a day out for the boys by their Grandparents and I knew they would not want to miss it!
So we headed over to Epping for our pre booked family day out, to Epping and Ongar Railway. The longest heritage railway in Essex, it used to be part of the central line. A vintage routemaster bus picks up passengers from Epping tube station and takes them to North Weald Station where they can board a steam or diesel train and travel to either Epping or Coopersale. Of course I knew this would be right up the monkeys street, espeacially little monkey as he loves buses and trains so much. The trains and the bus can be used over and over on a day ticket.
We have seen the bus waiting to pick up passengers outside Epping Tube station a few times in the past, so it was good to get on board and experience the heritage ride. The monkeys asked to sit downstairs and loved the vintage drive, with the traditional bus conductor. The journey to North weald didn't take long at all. A little wait in the station there for the steam train, meant we got to stand next to an open fire that was roaring away inside the ticket office. A warm welcome from the cold and wet outside. There was even a ladies only waiting room. The carriages took me back to my own childhood, traveling on the trains with my parents!
At Ongar station there is a refreshments kiosk and gift shop and at Coppersale you cannot alight the train. There is no station or platforn there, just what would be a pleasant journey through Epping Forest, should it not be pouring down with rain like it was!
I think you can see from the photo's that the monkeys loved their day out, and we shall definitely be paying a visit again, just when the weather is drier and warmer next time, so that we can take a picnic.