Real Ale Trains 2020

Real Ale on the Move!

Enjoy ale on the rails as a steam loco does two return trips along the line, while you watch the Leicestershire Countryside pass you by.

Please note that pre-booking is essential for our Real Ale Trains.

Click here to buy tickets online


We're offering a choice of tickets, with options for train travel only or train travel with food included. For our first train on 14th March, food options offer a choice of pies, both served with chips and mushy peas. Food options must be pre-booked.

Dates for 2020 are as follows:

Saturday March 14th - Now available for booking!
Saturday April 4th
Saturday May 9th
Saturday June 13th
Saturday July 11th
Saturday August 15th
Saturday October 10th
Saturday November 14th


We will be serving cask beers from Nottingham Brewery and other guest ales to be announced nearer the dates.

On 14th March we’ll be serving beers from Full Mash and Scribblers Breweries, in addition to Nottingham Brewery.

The train will be departing at 18:30 from Loughborough Central.

Food options (food choices must be pre-booked).

For passengers wishing to enjoy a meal on board the train on 14th March 2020, we're offering a choice of two pies. Tickets for train travel only are also available.

Food options for Saturday 14th March 2020 are:

  • Chicken and mushroom pie served with chips and mushy peas
  • Vegetable pie served with chips and mushy peas


Food options for Real Ale Trains later in 2020 will be published soon.


How much?

Train fares are only £22* per person including food, or £18 for train travel only - don’t forget, it’s two round trips....

Booking Information...

Due to limited seats on this train, tickets are advance, internet booking only. There are no concessionary fares. The train departs Loughborough Central at 18.30 and makes two trips to Leicester North, before returning to Loughborough Central at approx. 21.45. You are welcome to remain on the train at Loughborough until at least 22.00 buying/drinking your beer (subject to supplies not running out!) and leaving the station by 22.30. (so you can either head to the pub or head home). Other alcoholic beverages, soft drinks and bar snacks are available to purchase on board during your journey. Less able-bodied passengers, due to the configuration of the coaches, can only be accommodated if they are not confined to a wheelchair.

Passengers are conveyed by the Company's trains in accordance with the Company's "Conditions of Carriage" (as shown on this website). All train services, locomotives, exhibits and other attractions appear subject to availability and are subject to change without prior notice.


Are you looking to stay a little longer...? There are many Bed & Breakfast establishments well within the reach of the railway - click here to view some of the options.


Our next running day

Tuesday Wednesday and Thursday
Chase and Skye from PAW Patrol are visiting the GCR this week.

One steam locomotive and our diesel railcar will be operating.

Our trains are operating normally this week and the railway is not currently affected by flooding.
More information...

Subscribe to our newsletter

Make a donation

To make a donation to our supporting charity click the Donate button below

Donate to the Charity

Main Line Xtra

If you are a Friend of the Great Central Railway, you can access Main Line Xtra which provides additional news, special offers and features. To access Main Line Xtra click here

Want to become a Friend? Join now by clicking here

Special Events

This is a selection of our special events, to see the full list, click here

Trip Advisor Certificate of Excellence 2016

Visit England Quality Assured Attraction