Despite having lived in the area for more than ten years, I never knew that Ickenham Miniature Railway even existed until I read The Mummy Stylist’s account of her afternoon out there. I used to go to the quiz night at the Coach and Horses in Ickenham with a group of friends every Tuesday night for several years and had no idea that there was an alleyway just down the side of the car park leading to a miniature railway. Having discovered that the railway opened on the first Saturday of each month, I resolved that we would pay a visit the next time it was open.
It was the perfect Saturday to visit – a beautiful warm, sunny afternoon. I’m not sure who was more excited about the trains – the girls or hubby! There were several different trains to look at – from model versions of the electric trains I remember seeing as a child, to the miniature steam engines.
There was a turntable at the end of the track so the trains could turn around; a booking office to buy the tickets from, a little café selling drinks and snacks and a station to catch the train from. I think there must have been a birthday party going on too as there were lots of Thomas the Tank Engine balloons around and small children eating cake!
We bought our tickets from the booking office – 50p a ride for both adults and children – and had these punched at the entrance to Ickenham St Giles station before we boarded the train. Hubby took the girls on first so I could take some photos and then we swapped over. I was quite surprised to see how far back the train tracks went – we went round a couple of times, going under a bridge and through two tunnels.
Afterwards we sat in the sunshine for a while watching all the different trains going around the track and just enjoying having time together as a family. With hubby having been so busy lately, these moments have felt even more precious. It was nice not to feel like we needed to do anything, or explore anything – we were just happy to sit in the sunshine and watch the trains go by. Sometimes it’s the simple moments like these that are the best.