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“Good day out”

Ribble Steam Railway
Ranked #9 of 63 things to do in Preston
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: Hidden away in the heart of Preston's old Industrial Docklands, Ribble Steam Railway has been greeting visitors since 2005. Whatever the weather, you can expect a warm and friendly welcome from Ribble Steam's team of committed volunteers. Whether you are a keen steam enthusiast, or just simply looking for a fun and relaxed day out, Ribble Steam offers a memorable experience of Lancashire's world famous Industrial heritage. Visit the museum discover the history of Preston docks and the story of the first electrical trains. Did you know Preston once had a key role in designing and building trains, close to docks, that were then exported all over the World? Visit the Ribble Steam Railway on any weekend between May and September for steam train rides along our line. The three mile return trip includes crossing the dock swing bridge (a unique feature on our line) and then along the bank of the River Ribble, giving views of The City of Preston that are unique. Train Rides leave from the museum platform at 1100, 1200, 1300, 1400, 1500 and 1600 and your Day Ticket enables you to travel on as many rides as you wish on the day of your visit. Note ALL OUR SEASONAL OPENING TIMES & VARIATIONS ARE CLEARLY SHOWN ON OUR WEBSITE
Useful Information: Wheelchair access, Activities for young children, Food available for purchase
Level Contributor
21 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Good day out”
Reviewed 31 August 2014

We had a good day out at the Railway. My young son, 3, enjoyed all the trains, getting to ride on the steam train and the miniature one. Good place to spend an afternoon and dad will really enjoy it if he is into railways.

The cafe was packed so we could not eat there and they could perhaps expand on their activities for the little'uns but they did have free face painting on the day.

Visited August 2014
Thank Darren D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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224 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Derbyshire, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
61 reviews
26 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
“Prepare for midweek frustration”
Reviewed 30 August 2014

I give a poor rating with some hesitation because most of the problems I encountered were beyond the control of the railway but they could still ruin the day for anybody else. I wanted to travel on the rare preserved railbus, which only runs on occasional Wednesdays. On my first attempt I travelled by train all the way from London specially and walked to the railway in the pouring rain. This included 20 minutes stranded in the rain the wrong side of the swingbridge whilst boats went through. On getting to the railway I discovered that the passenger timetable had been scrapped for several hours whilst a late running freight train was dealt with. I had paid for my ticket by then but could only look at the museum and workshop before I had to get my train back to London. The nearest bus service seemed to be in timetable chaos caused by the earlier swing bridge opening.
More recently I made a second attempt and again walked from Preston station. The later end of the walk is extremely unattractive as evidenced by a dead rat and dead rabbit on the litter choked, car-obstructed and overgrown footpaths through the industrial estate. For a second time I discovered that the timetabled service had been suspended owing to a late-running freight train. I'd seen all the stuff in the museum on my previous abortive visit. Deciding to have lunch in the greasy and dingy cafe I was not impressed to discover that both my first two choices were 'off' because of "staff shortages during the holidays". Is this supposed to be a tourist attraction or not?
I did eventually get a trip on the railbus but on the way back to Preston station was again very disappointed to discover that the local bus timetable was a complete work of fiction and ended up having to walk nearly all the way again.
All visitors are strongly advised to only consider accessing the railway by car or taxi and take some sandwiches.

Visited August 2014
5 Thank Paul H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bolton, UK
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Great day out, hidden gem”
Reviewed 25 August 2014 via mobile

We visited the railway on bank holiday weekend which was Mr. Ribble’s Friendly Engines Gala Party Weekend. The staff were all really helpful and friendly and helped with our pram. There are a number of engines and carriages in the museum and a miniature railway with free rides up and down the museum. There's also things for children to play with and tables to colour in and draw trains dotted around the museum. As it was the gala weekend there were faces on all the engines. With unlimited travel on the train as well as entrance to the museum it's excellent value at £6 for adults and under 3 are free. There's a cafe in the museum and a buffet car on the train. The train journey was approx 20 minutes with views of the docks and river. There was also access to the workshop but we ran out of time to have a look. They also had free face painting and balloons. The gift shop was good value and sold Thomas gifts as well as other popular train gifts.

Overall a great value attraction hidden in Preston which we will be visiting again.

Visited August 2014
3 Thank JaneM_T2005
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
14 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Fantastic day out”
Reviewed 24 August 2014

took a group of children to ribble Steam Railway staff couldn't have been more helpful nothing was to much trouble for them thank you all so much you are stars, Newnewtonheathecoyouth.

Visited August 2014
2 Thank Marlene G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Preston, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
158 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
“A lovely day out for my son and I.”
Reviewed 20 August 2014

Lots to see and do and for a youngster who has never been on a train before it was priceless. It cost £10 for we two , you can stay all day and have as many train rides as you wish. We went today, Wednesday , and the rides were on a Diesel engine but at the weekends they run steam locomotives which we'll return for.
The museum was packed with all types of full sized engines and carriages, a miniature railway with free rides for all. You are also allowed into the workshops which are very safe to see refurbishments. The on site cafe sold good priced wholesome food.
Great day.

Visited August 2014
1 Thank Peter H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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