SEATON TRAMWAY OPENS NEW £3 MILLION STATION 28th JUNE!
Published: 9th Jun
Seaton Tramway is proud to announce the opening of its brand-new, state of the art station in Seaton. The 28th of June will see the culmination of 10 years of planning and hard work, with the opening of the new £3 million station. Providing a contemporary, all-year round facility, café and gift shop, it will allow visitors to immerse themselves in the fascination surrounding the history and operations of the tramway before boarding a tram and travelling back in time to a golden age of travel.
Chief Exec - Jenny Nunn commented “The new project has been a huge undertaking by the tramway and represents major investment in the tourism economy of Seaton. The town has witnessed a very successful regeneration project over the past few years, which has seen the addition of Tesco, Seaton Jurassic, Premier Inn and 220 Bovis homes. The new Tram Station will be one of the final pieces in the puzzle for the town’s regeneration project and a unique addition to the Southwest’s coastline. With the 301 square metres of internal space, it will enable the charity to attract even more visitors to the area than ever before.”
This is the first new station to be built by a heritage railway in many years and has seen highly complex railway engineering works take place, work not seen in the area since the tramway moved to Seaton in 1970.
Every effort from the tramway staff has been put into creating the new station in Seaton, work which started last September. Almost 450 tonnes of ballast, 300 sleepers and over 190 piles have been used in the project to lift the station two metres above the ground. The new building will be home to four new platforms, which will house four trams each night, creating a stunning showroom displaying some of the famous heritage trams. Brand new interpretation will allow an even more immersive visitor experience celebrating the fascinating story of the tramway.
As well as the opening of the new station, there will also be the opening of a brand-new café and gift shop, Claude’s, named after and dedicated to Seaton Tramway’s founder, Claude Lane. The café will boast a new menu and is delighted to announce that it will be joining the effort in cutting the use of one-time-use plastics down to almost nothing including the offer of paper straws. The tramway hopes this is the first step of many in the journey to making Seaton a leader in green waste. ‘Claude’s’ will also contain a giftshop, offering a brand-new range of souvenirs & gifts.
With visitor numbers increasing over recent years, the new station will enable space for events, exhibitions and a greater visitor experience, accessing the trams and the Axe Valley for decades to come, and will be the new home to its many family events and evenings including The Dinosaur Tram Adventure, The Fairy Special, The Pirate Tram, The Bright Sparks Science show and returning this Christmas, the award-winning The Polar Express™ Tram Ride Experience.
Seaton Tramway has had immense support from local residents, businesses, volunteers and staff and has been gratefully supported by the ‘Making it Local’ programme, which is in part funded by the European Agricultural Fund and has granted the Tramway £100k for its continued support for rural tourism, cultural and heritage activities.
During construction of the new building, the tram service has been operating from the tramway’s Riverside Depot. Here visitors are offered a unique, previously unseen look into the inner workings of this heritage tramway. Until 27th June, the tour will provide behind the scenes insights into the daily workings of the Depot and a sneak preview of the new station before it opens.
The new station will be open from 10am June 28th to welcome its first visitors through the doors. The first 1,000 visitors will each receive a limited-edition commemorative poster and will be the very first to experience the new operation. Staff and volunteers will be present to answer any questions about the new Station. Seaton Tramway will officially host a grand opening later in August.