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If you are looking to take part in one of our Drive a Train Experience Days or you are looking to purchase one as a gift for someone else, please make sure that you read through our Booking Information/Terms & Conditions below. If you have any questions please contact us on: 0161 764 7790.

Participants (*and guests attending the guided tour) must:

• *Be physically fit and aged over 18 at the time of the experience. Our risk assessment process requires that a doctor’s letter be provided confirming that participants aged 75 or over are medically fit and able to participate in the Drive a Train Experience Day. This must be made available to the railway at least one week prior to the day of the activity.
• Be able, in the event of an emergency evacuation; to climb on/off the locomotive from ground level unaided, this may be up to a 3 metre (10 feet) vertical climb with steps at up to 0.6M (2ft) spacing. You must also be able to cope with discomfort, variable temperatures, weather and lighting, heights (viaducts and bridges), darkness (tunnel), noise and vibration.
• Be able to read (with glasses or contact lenses, if necessary) a car number plate from a distance of 20 metres.
• Must be able to hear and understand verbal instructions in noisy surroundings.
• *Disclose any medical conditions and treatment/medication that may affect mobility, concentration, dexterity, co-ordination, consciousness and ability to understand and follow instructions.

The Drive a Train Experience Day and guided tour may not be suitable for those with some disabilities, particularly where these affect mobility, concentration, dexterity, co-ordination and ability to understand and follow instructions. The East Lancashire Railway advises you to contact us prior to booking one of our experiences if you believe this may affect the participant and/or guests and to ensure the activities are suitable. The East Lancashire Railway reserve the right to terminate, without refund, your Drive a Train Experience Day if it is deemed unsafe on the day for the participant to take part in the Drive a Train Experience by the Footplate Experience Manager or by a member of our staff.

Guest Conditions

It is only possible for you to bring a limited number of guests with you on your experience day. Please see the table below:

Bronze Steam Drive a Train Experience - Monday/Friday 2 guests per participant
Bronze Steam Drive a Train Experience - Saturday 3 guests per participant
Silver Steam Drive a Train Experience - Monday/Friday/Saturday 3 guests per participant
Bronze Diesel Drive a Train Experience - Monday 2 guests per participant
Bronze Diesel Drive a Train Experience - Friday/Saturday 3 guests per participant
Silver Diesel Drive a Train Experience - Monday/Friday/Saturday 3 guests per participant

If your guests wish to have lunches or tours, these can be provided for an extra charge, these should preferably be included with your booking and certainly advised to the Footplate Experience Manager no later than two weeks before your Drive a Train Experience Day. Please note that the East Lancashire Railway cannot guarantee a lunch to extra guests arriving on the day who have not been confirmed as booked in.

Children/Dogs - Children/dogs are not allowed on the footplate, in the cab or on the guided tours but are permitted to travel in the coaches behind the locomotive when driven by the Drive a Train participants. Dogs are not allowed in areas where food or drinks are being served with the exception of guide/assistance dogs.

Clothing & Footwear - Participants must wear stout shoes or boots (preferably steel toe cap boots) and avoid wearing polyester or nylon trousers. Overalls and gloves are provided for participants to wear on the footplate and high visibility vests for use when participants and guests are on the guided tour.

Guided Tours - The guided tours are over rough ground and involve a fair amount of walking (approx 2 miles) whilst visiting the Metrolink Bridge, Locomotive and Carriage works and Bury South Signal Box. Only guests wearing sensible walking shoes will be allowed to participate in these tours for their own safety (this means wearing flat walking shoes or boots not canvas pumps/sandals or fashion shoes). The East Lancashire Railway reserves the right to refuse inclusion on guided tours to anyone not wearing appropriate footwear.

Dietary Requirements - If you or your guests have any special dietary requirements, please advise at the time of booking, (Vegetarian, cœliac etc.).

Alcohol & Drugs - Participants and guests must not attend the Drive a Train Experience Day under the effects of alcohol, or any drugs which may affect their vigilance, whether medically prescribed or not, or consume such while on the Drive a Train Experience Day. Meals are taken in our Activity Centre on Platform 2 and Drive a Train Experience participants and guests are not permitted to consume any alcoholic refreshments until the day's experience has finished. The East Lancashire Railway reserves the right to terminate, without refund, your Drive a Train Experience Day if our staff believe you or your guests to be under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Safety Information - All Participants will receive Safety Information which they and their guests should familiarise themselves with, prior to the date of their Drive a Train Experience Day. On the day of their Drive a Train Experience, participants and their guests will receive a short Safety Briefing relevant to the day’s activities.

Mobile Phones /Photographic Equipment – When the locomotive is in motion, participants are prohibited from using mobile telephones/other interactive mobile devices and photographic equipment whilst Driving or Firing. Opportunities for photographs on the footplate are available once the locomotive has come to a stand and secured by the crew.

Complementary service travel tickets can only be used on normal services and are not valid on special events.

For Full Day Experiences - Requests to be included into specific AM or PM groups for Driving/Firing/Second Manning or guided tours are not permitted as group allocation can be only be confirmed on arrival on the day of your Drive a Train Experience.

Due to the high cost of running Drive a Train Experience Days, the East Lancashire Railway are unable to make any refunds or arrange alternative dates once a firm booking has been confirmed.

Vouchers with an allocated date are valid for that day only.

The East Lancashire Railway will permit you to transfer the place to someone else under the same booking conditions, but you must advise the East Lancashire Railway of the details at the earliest opportunity.

Open vouchers for a Drive a Train Experience to be taken within one year from the date of purchase.

The East Lancashire Railway will permit you to take your Drive a Train Experience on a date after the expiry date on the voucher provided the East Lancashire Railway receives an additional payment to cover any increase in costs applicable when the Drive a Train Experience is taken.

The East Lancashire Railway reserves the right to cancel a Drive a Train Experience Day in the event of circumstances beyond the Railways control, but will issue customers with alternative date.

Locomotives will be used from the current fleet and cannot be specified in advance.

Memberships – The free membership offered by the East Lancashire Railway Preservation Society runs until the 31st December of the current year and is renewable on 1st January. Person’s joining after 1st October will receive membership up to the 31st December of the following year. By accepting the free membership offered by the East Lancashire Railway Preservation Society, you are agreeing for the East Lancashire Railway Preservation Society to hold your details on file for ELR purposes only. Memberships begin on the date of the participants Drive a Train Experience, not at the time of purchase. Please allow up to 4 weeks for your application to be processed.

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The East Lancashire Light Railway Company Limited registered in England and Wales. Registered office: Bolton Street Station, Bolton Street, Bury, Lancashire, BL9 0EY Registered number: 02023981