Why not bring your class or playgroup to meet Santa at the Middleton Railway on
Tuesday 4th, Wednesday 5th or Thursday 6th December 2018?

Santa travels on our train, along with the children, and they receive their gifts on board.

The cost is only £6.50p per child!

Supervising adults travel free.

Our train can accommodate up to 4 full-sized occupied wheelchairs.

PLEASE NOTE: School Santa Train visits MUST be booked in advance, and are NOT open to the general public.

To book places, please call 0845 680 1758 (09:30 - 19.00)

Engine shed at Xmas



Matthew Murray at the back of the platform

D2999 at Moor Road

Click on these links and discover:

What the Middleton Railway can offer you and your students

When we are open for School Visits

How much your visit will cost

and Where you can contact us to arrange your visit

Matthew Murray departing Moor Road platform

What the Middleton Railway can offer you and your students:

Thrills - a train ride, to make your visit really memorable.

History - in 1812 the world's first commercially successful steam locomotives began work on our railway, attracting worldwide attention (including that of a pit engineer called George Stephenson . . .).

Even More History - this is the world's oldest working railway, with over 250 years' continuous record of service to the city of Leeds! The coal it originally transported there turned Leeds into a huge centre of industry. For around 50 years we've served Leeds's tourist industry; for around 40 years we've served Leeds area schools as an educational visits venue.

You can link your visit to a wide variety of subjects and topics:

  • Victorians
  • Local history
  • Industrial history
  • Transport history
  • Mathematics
  • Technology
  • Geography
  • Science
  • The Railway and its Museum make a stimulating venue for Art Projects or Creative Writing.
  • The Railway's southern end adjoins Middleton Woods, ideal for a Nature Walk or a picnic lunch.

Our Facilities

Education Room at Moor Road

We have a large Education Room equipped with various media aids, where your class can complete their worksheets, or you can conduct your own on-site lesson. Tours of the locomotives and history displays can also be arranged, led by our volunteers.

Our purpose-built working museum facility was opened several years ago, and has been awarded museum accreditation.

Locomotives (many of them built in Leeds), are displayed in a large hall, along with items from the long history of our Railway, and a real locomotive boiler for students to explore.

Museum Models

Boiler on display in Museum

There is a Display/Interactive area, where classes can discover more about the history of the Middleton Railway, the surrounding districts, and the Leeds locomotive industry, by watching our Railway's history audio-visual film, and looking at our information boards.

The same area has a cafe, and a shop with small, inexpensive souvenirs for sale. Outside are a few other displays, and a good-sized car park where classes can safely leave and rejoin their transport.

Our building and train are fully compliant with the Equality Act, and so easily accessible to those with disabilities. The building has CCTV monitoring and an automatic fire detection system and alarm. Our risk assessment is available on request from ourselves or from Education Leeds. The Railway has a child protection policy, which clearly states that volunteers may not be in a one-to-one situation with a minor.

To help you plan your visit to the Middleton Railway we've listed below the various activities we can offer in addition to a ride on the train.

Title Description Maximum Group Size Expected Time Needed per Group

Train Ride only

A ride up and down the line.

This can be extended in a number of ways (see other options below).

At the top of the line are Middleton Park and Woods, ideal for a nature or history walk.

At either end, a volunteer can explain how the engine runs around the train at each end of the line, as well as other aspects of the engine and train-working etc..

70 - including adults.

Minimum 45 minutes

Engine Shed Tour

This can be tailored to your needs and the age of the children.


Minimum 15 minutes

History Talks

Our railway has a long and interesting history - more than 250 years of it! We can provide a range of talks to suit your needs.

We also have an audio-visual presentation, though this is most suitable for older children.


Minimum 15 minutes

Also, for use in conjunction with a train ride, and/or other activities


Prepared by education consultants, and available for Key Stages 1, 2 and 3. We recommend that teachers make their own choice to complement the topic being studied.


Minimum 20 minutes

Train Quiz

A quiz which can be adapted to suit children of different age groups. This can be used to enhance the train ride.



Railway Safety Jigsaw

This is a large floor jigsaw designed to introduce children to potential dangers of railways.


Minimum 15 minutes

Story Telling

We have produced various books to introduce aspects of the history of the Middleton Railway, and any one of these can be read to a group of children.


20 minutes

How Steam Locomotives Work

A worksheet-based activity which complements the tour of the Engine House and the Train Ride.




Please note:

We have indicated how long we expect each activity to take for the maximum number of children. It may be possible to complete the activity in less time for a smaller group, but it may take longer for younger children. Often we are able to extend the activity.

For all activities there is a maximum number of children who can participate at the same time, due to the availability of equipment and space.

In addition, we may be able to accommodate your own activities. Again, safety considerations and space may limit what can be done, but if you have an idea please do ask us about it!

Click here to contact the Education Team, if you wish to know more about these possibilities

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When We Are Open For School Visits

Moor Road Headquarters

Our 2018 School Visits Calendar

Wednesdays only: in school term time.

Our railway is normally closed from January until the end of March (or until the weekend before Easter, if this is earlier), so visits are not usually possible during this period.

December - watch this place for the date and details of our 2019 School Santa Trains.

Please note: places for ALL our School Events MUST be booked in advance, and School Events are NOT open to the general public.

As the Middleton Railway is completely volunteer-operated, all bookings are subject to the availability of volunteers for the required date.

Please click here to contact the Education Team, to discuss your needs.

How Much Your Visit Will Cost

Once more, we are hoping to help schools by maintaining our previous price structure throughout 2019:

Engine Type Visit type Cost per child Minimum charge
Diesel Engine Ride only, together with a Museum visit £2.50 £100
Steam Engine Ride only, together with a Museum visit £2.50 £250


Parties of below 10 children or above 100 children - If you wish to bring a very small or very large school party please click here to contact the Education Team to discuss our charges for these groups as we treat these as special circumstances.

Charge for adults - We do not charge for accompanying adults.

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Where You Can Contact Us To Organise Your Visit

Please telephone 0845 680 1758


Send an e-mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Write to

The Education Team
The Middleton Railway Trust Ltd,
The Station,
Moor Road,
LS10 2JQ

Whether you telephone, e-mail or write, please include in your message:

  • your name
  • your school's name
  • your telephone contact details

A member of our Education Team will contact you within a few days. (Please be aware that the railway is operated completely by volunteers, so things sometimes take a little bit longer.)

We can discuss, without obligation, your school's educational visit requirements. We strongly recommend that you visit the railway yourself, prior to your event, so that you can familiarise yourself with the facilities and meet some of the volunteers. This can be arranged with our compliments.

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We look forward to welcoming you and your students!

Engine Shed