The trip started at 05.38 from Milton Keynes station. What a wonderful sight to see this fantastic train contrasting with the modernity of its surroundings at MK. We were welcomed on board by the very friendly and informative steward Iain, who we later learned was a volunteer, but was a great ambassador for Statesman Rail. The Pullman carriage is very comfortably appointed. Each table has a fresh flower arrangement and the tables are set for food upon a white linen tablecloth. We were served teas and handed very informative leaflets regarding our excursion.
Soon afterwards when more people had boarded we were served an excellent breakfast consisting of a choice of fruit or cereal, followed by either smoked salmon and poached eggs, or traditional English.
Our trip took us to Carnforth on the west coast mainline, where we then branched onto the Cumbrian coast line. The views were spectacular, with the coast on one side and views of the Cumbrian mountains to the east. Eventually we reached Carlisle and spent over two hours sightseeing before re-boarding the train for the second part of the journey.
The journey from Carlisle to Settle has some of the wildest, remotest scenery in England and several parts of the route are not accessible by car. It serves as an amazing tribute to Victorian engineering with its multiple viaducts and tunnels constructed in very inhospitable conditions.
Soon afterwards we were treated to a superb meal which would have graced many a fine restaurant, with some champagne and wine included. After dinner each diner was given a complimentary box of chocolates.
All staff were friendly and helpful, including the chef who came to check that all the food was up to standard.
I can thoroughly recommend Statesman Rail and I hope to join them again in future,
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