Children from Frosterley Primary School visited 'The Story Train' at Stanhope Station during a visit to the railway on Thursday 8th December.
'The Story Train' is a new community project by Sam Slatcher of Citizen Songwriters working in partnership with Weardale Railway Limited, and is based in a former HST Mk3 first class buffet car that has been stabled in the main platform at Stanhope Station. The coach has been transformed into a creative hub for storytelling, poetry and live music to take place.
It is currently being used during the Railway's Christmas event for live performances of a new children's Christmas tale, which was written by local writers.
Claire Gibbons, the Senior Community Liaison Officer for The Auckland Project, described the visit by Frosterley School.
"On arrival the children listened to the 'Billy the Buffet Car' story, followed by a creative writing session, and the children produced some great work. They had an opportunity to view some of their previous creative writing that is proudly on display in the buffet car, whilst on route to the buffet counter to collect drinks and biscuits to enjoy while they made Christmas cards to take home.
"Sam finished the session with a Christmas story and a singalong to 'Riding in a Weardale Wonderland'. Just before home time Wayne Dixon (General Manager, Weardale Railway Limited) kindly gifted each child with a Weardale Railway gift bag and a tree decoration for the teachers which were all greatly appreciated.
"The lovely thing was also listening to the children discussing station safety and remembering the things we have covered in earlier railway safety sessions.
"A great day was had by all and I am sure the local schools and community groups will all enjoy accessing 'The Story Train' for various sessions in the future."
The photos courtesy of Claire Gibbons show the children visiting 'The Story Train' coach at Stanhope Station and are used with kind permission of Frosterley Primary School.