National Railway Museum, Ft Olivia and Robyn’s first train journey.

Life just seems to be one big rush at the moment. With juggling kids, dogs, work and the launch of a new business venture, it’s been all work and no play for a quite a while now, and unfortunately, Olivia and Robyn have been getting the rubbish end of the stick. All I can say is, thank god for CBeebies and YouTube. So today we decided to down tools, shut shop and have a day off.

After a little deliberating we decided to get on the train and head to the National Railway Museum in York. One: it was the perfect chance to take the girls on the train for the first time and two: because it’s free entry. I wouldn’t be a proper Yorkshireman if I didn’t mention the cost.

We only live a 10-minute walk from the local train station so it’s a little shocking that I’ve never taken them on the train before.

Olivia became excited almost straight away at the thought of going on a train. Robyn, however just did that open mouth stare thing she does. On the way to the station, all I heard from Olivia is “I can’t see the trains yet!” We bought her one of those wooden train tracks from IKEA a while ago and ever since then she’s had a fascination with trains and of course she’ll have probably watched a YouTube video with some American kids singing about them.

After a short wait on the platform and a quick lesson on safety near a train line, we were on the train and on our way. Once off the train on the other side, the Railway Museum itself is only a short way away from York station. Far enough though when you’ve got a toddler on your shoulders, pressing down on your head.

The Railway Museum

First things first. Let’s eat. When ever I go anyway one of the first things I check out is: Food! Where can I eat?

We found the Dining Car restaurant just inside, after the gift shop. We selected the family deal which consisted of two adult sandwiches, two kids sandwiches, two teas/coffees and two kids drinks for £19.95, which I thought was a good price. I tried the salted beef and mustard sandwich and Rachel had chicken and bacon. As far as sandwiches go it was pretty good. The kid’s cheese one didn’t look bad either. The food here is everything you would need for light lunch. You don’t want anything heavy if you walking around all day. As you can see from the photos, it was a hit with the girls.

There was also an outdoor miniature train, that for just £3 a ticket you could have a go on. The big kid in me couldn’t resist taking Olivia on. Apparently, it doesn’t go fast enough and we had to put our arms in the air.

Robyn was a little too small for it but her time will come.

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There is plenty of other things to see and do as well. Not all of the trains are accessible to the public. The ones we saw first were the ones that you could only look at from the outside, but once we got into the ‘Great Hall’, then you find the ones that you interact with a bit more. You can venture inside a lot of them, even underneath a couple of them. Which was cool. There was even a little soft play area for kids under 5. We, of course, had to stop off for a short play break. Oh and a Thomas the Tank Engine ride too. Of course!

Today was a much-needed break for everyone. A break from everything we’ve had going on over the last couple of weeks. It was a chance to switch off, forget everything and recharge our batteries. A chance to stop and remember what’s really important and the reasons why we work so hard.

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Probably the best free museum that I have ever been to. Well worth a trip to York for!

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