Doctomum's Sussex Days Out: Littlehampton Railway

My son is addicted to trains, so when I found that there was little train about 10 minutes drive from me at Littlehampton Railway, I was on it like a car bonnet, or a train bonnet (if trains have bonnets).
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

About Littlehampton Railway

Apparently it's 'the oldest 12.25” gauge railway in Britain' but to my Firstborn it was 15 minutes of pure excitement. It's basically a little train that takes you from Mewsbrook park to Norfolk gardens (where there is another café and miniature golf) and back again.
 
There is also visitor centre in the engine shed which has a little toy train set they can have a go on, some local train related history, a few trainy bits and bobs to but for train fans, and contains enthusiastic knowledgeable staff. 
 
It's normally open 11am-3pm most days, sometimes longer or less depending on the day or the weather. They do update their Facebook page with when the train is running that day.
 
 

Getting There

 
This was simple. I bundled the family in the car, drove down the road and turfed them out for train related fun. But for those further afield it is a simple journey and easy to find, located in Mewsbrook Park in Littlehampton.
There is also a handy car park (chargeable as run by the council but not too pricey) right next door, by the Inspire Leisure Centre.
 
 

Our Train Ride

Firstborn bounded up to the 'train platform' eager to get on and selected his carriage. We got a family of 4 in one carriage and still had a bit of space - the are deceptively roomy.
 
The train driver drove the train round to the other end of the train and gave us a friendly wave, attached his loco on to the other side and off we went.
They gave us real tickets so we felt all 'Polar Express' when the train driver stamped them (and also meant that I could indulge in a bit of polar express filmage later, instead of Frozen, again).
 
 
 
 
 
The train drove us through to Norfolk Gardens, along the seafront, past the sewerage works (but they didn't smell as expected!), stopped outside the crazy golf and then completed the trip back again.
 
 
 
 
 
It cost us £7 for two adults (@3.50 each) and two under 3s (free) for a return. It's a fair price when you consider its a local attraction fuelling our local train economy and has bounds of enthusiasm from the staff who are often volunteers.
 
 

The Shop

As you may know from my days out, nothing is complete until you have visited the gift shop. Here there a nice little selection of train goodies.
 
I thought Firstborn would have been well in there but he was obsessed with running the model train around the train set.
 
 
 
 
 
We picked up a train flag for him for £1, and there were other pocket money priced goods on display.
 
One of the staff told me all about the history of the train (which was surprisingly interesting and told very well, particularly as I have the concentration of a goldfish) and the we went on our way.
 
 

Other stuff that's around

There is a public loo onsite in Mewbrook park (yay) as well as a café for all your tea and snack related needs. I can recommend the tea in Mewsbrook Park Café - it came in a glass teacup and made me feel all posh.
 
As it's a park, obviously there is loads of parkland and a nice lake there to tire those kids out and let them go swimming (don't actually let them go swimming in it, there is the inspire swimming pool instead for that and it's right next door).
 
It right on Littlehampton seafront, so you have a beach, albeit a bit of a stony one to run those kidlets ragged on and plenty of cafes about.
 
 
 
 
 
We popped into The Honeypot Café in Rustington just up the road on the way back, which had the most bang on Chai tea latte and nommidy nom nom yum yum breakfast - we sampled the lot fry up, kids fry up and pancakes. I kid you not, it well deserved all the nom noms back there. 
We haven't been there before and it was like a little piece of friendly Brighton in what we nick-name Rusty-dawson-ville. They spread some kind of addictive substance (it could be honey) on most things and oh my god, it tastes good #LegalBreakfastHigh!
 
If the Honeypot café guys are reading this, just get some highchairs and you could corner the family market in West Sussex!
  

Summary

Great little local train ride, ideal for kid train enthusiasts and perfect as part of a family day out. We can't wait to go back when it's sunnier, have ice-creams on the beach and ride again. We may even indulge in some crazy golf next time.
 
 
 
This post is all my own views as I just love Sussex and want you all to come and live here too!
No sponsorship whatsoever.
 
 
*****
 
 
Got a Sussex day out you would like us to write about - just contact us and we'd be happy to help. #LoveSussex
 
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The Giggles Family

4 comments:

  1. I used to work in Littlehampton so this brought back hazy memories! Have you ever taken your boys to Thomas the Tank Engine at the Watercress line? We went about 5 years ago and I swear it was our best ever family day out (apart from the fact that toddler Faith got stung by a wasp whilst eating an ice-cream right at the end!). The trains were amazing and we all enjoyed it. I presume it is still running these days. x

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    1. I will defintely have to look into that - it is ALL about the trains at the moment, even train crossings are exciting ( and as you may know there are a lot of them in this area so we spend a lot of time sitting at them, spotting the green Henry's AKA southeastern trains).
      It's a small world with you knowing littlehampton too...but then all the best people come to the south east at some point! X

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  2. Ok I need to go just for the Chai Latte. It looks yum. Ooo and yhat cute little face all excited by the train. I wants to squeeze it! #KidTested

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    1. Honestly, THE BEST Chai latte ever. And, I've had a lot of chai lattes. It was so rich and creamy.....next time Gadget, I will take you there.

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