Discover the Marston Vale Line – Your Community Railway This Spring! 

The Marston Vale Line (Bedford – Bletchley) has a packed programme for the spring! We are delighted to be participating in the first Greensand Country Festival over May half-term – please visit   www.greensandcountry.com for the full programme.

History through Word & Song Trains – Sat 26 MayWed 30 May, Fri 1 & Sat 2 June
A first for the Marston Vale Line! A guided train journey between Bedford Midland and Woburn Sands. The guides will provide an insight into the history of the Line with local musician Geraldine Pearson Green performing her own Bedfordshire folk songs at intervals during the journey. Normal train fares apply. No booking required. Meet at Bedford Midland Station at 11:45am and 1:45pm
Guided walk from Woburn Sands to Ridgmont – Sat 26 MayWed 30 May & Fri 1 June – 1:15pm
Depart 1:15pm On arrival at Woburn Sands passengers can join a guided walk to Ridgmont and then catch the return train to Bedford. Ridgmont Station Heritage Centre is open until 4pm. Advance booking recommended for the Heritage Centre Tea Room – call 01525 287120/ 07512 619162.
Folk Singer Geraldine – Sat 26 MayWed 30 May, Fri 1 & Sat 2 June 12:30pm – 1:10pm & 2:30pm – 3:10pm
Alternatively on arrival at Woburn Sands, Folk Singer Geraldine will perform further songs on the platform prior to the departure of the return train to Bedford. Refreshments available at the Station Tavern adjacent to the station. Free Event. No booking required. Meet on the platform.
Guided Walk from Bow Brickhill to to Woburn Sands – Wed 30 May, 2:30pm – 4:15pm
Free Event – No booking required. The Bedford to Bletchley Rail Users’ Association (BBRUA) is hosting a guided walk from Bow Brickhill Station to Woburn Sands. Trains depart Bedford at 1:55 and Bletchley at 2:01. The walk will cross the road from Bow Brickhill Rail Station and proceed over a stile onto footpaths, up a gradual and fairly steep gradient, across a field with a view of Milton Keynes. Finishing by walking through woodland to Woburn Sands. Meeting Point is Bow Brickhill Rail Station.Please e-mailandy@bowbrickhill.com or call 07778 562259 for further information.
Bedfordshire Brickworks Exhibition – Saturday 2nd June (10:00am– 4:00pm) – Ridgmont Station Heritage Centre – Free Entry!
Andrew Mortlock, London Brick Archivist, will be bringing an extensive collection of archives, photographs and ephemera connected with the brickworks that used to dominate the landscape along the section of the Marston Vale Line between Bedford and Ridgmont and other areas of Bedfordshire. Andrew will also be bringing his collection of company magazines, the Phorpres News, containing records and photographs of London Brick Company workers.
Andrew and his family are steeped in London Brick with over 200 years’ service dating back to both his grandfathers. Those who came last year were fascinated by Andrew’s exhibition, and in fact a lot of new information came to light from visitors who had connections with the brickmaking industry, either personally or through family. The Heritage Centre and Tea Room will be open as usual.

Ridgmont Station Heritage Centre
The Heritage Centre is the restored jewel of the Marston Vale Line featuring the original Victorian Booking Office (with historical displays & temporary exhibitions), vintage Tea Room (in the former Ladies Waiting Room) and Gift Shop. Free entry! 10% discount in the Tea Room for rail passengers! Please visit http://bedsrcc.org.uk/ridgmont-station-heritage-centre for full details of the building. A Family Quiz and Puzzle Booklet is available for just £1. The latest temporary exhibition ‘The Journey from Bunyan to the Brickworks’ features part of the Pride Inspiration Hope Exhibition created by John Bunyan Museum & Library in partnership with Bedford Chronicles as part of the project The Journey from Bunyan to the Brickworks. This exhibition combines items from that exhibition together with previously unseen items from the Heritage Centre collection. There are a variety of circular & linear walks from the Heritage Centre to suit all abilities. Opening hours for 2018 are as follows:

  • Tea Room – daily all year except Mondays & Bank Holidays 9:00 – 4:00 (last orders 3:30). Sundays open 11:00 – 3:00 (bookings only) Booking recommended at other times– call 01525 287120/07512 619162
  • Gift Shop, Original Victorian Booking Office & Tourist Information Point – Tuesday – Saturday 10:00 – 4:00 until 15th December(11:-00 – 3:00 from 1st November) Call 01525 287121 or visit http://bedsrcc.org.uk/ridgmont-station-heritage-centre/

Group & school visits welcome all year round by prior arrangement.

Museum Explorer Passport Scheme
The Heritage Centre is participating in the Museum Expolorer Passport Scheme again this summer along with other museums and heritage centres across Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire & Essex. Collect your free passport from any partipating attraction, get it stamped at each museum you visit and take part in the missions!

See www.facebook.com/museumexplorer and www.museumexplorerpassport.com for full details.

Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any queries or would like further information on any aspect of the Marston Vale Community Rail Partnership or the Marston Vale Line.

Happy travelling!

Kind regards,

Stephen Sleight

Marston Vale Community Rail Partnership Officer

Tel. 01234 832645 (direct line)

E-mail stephens@bedsrcc.org.uk

Visit our website www.marstonvalecommunityrail.org.uk

Find us on Facebook! www.facebook.com/marstonvalecrp

Follow us on Twitter!@marstonvalecrp

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