Santa with train

Our Santa Special trains are now running, but are all fully booked - Click here for more details.

To avoid disappointment, please do not travel to the railway for these trains unless you have already booked your tickets in advance. If you do have tickets booked, then please make sure that you arrive in good time for your train.




The Middleton Railway invites you to bring your class or playgroup to meet Santa at the railway
on Tuesday 6th or Wednesday 7th December 2022.

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

The cost is only £8.50p per child!

Supervising adults travel free.

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

On each day there is a choice from five trains, departing at:
09:45, 10:45, 11:45, 12:45 and 13:45.

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

To book places, please call 07376 744 799 (Monday to Friday, 10:00 am - 4:00 pm only, please)

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 us or from Leeds City Council: click here to download a copy (which will open in a new browser tab or window). 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.

Title Description

Train Ride

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..

Museum Display Hall Tour

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

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.


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.

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.

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.

How Steam Locomotives Work

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

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.

We may be able to accommodate your own activities, although safety considerations and space may limit what can be done. If you have an idea please do ask us about it!

Click here for contact details for the Education Team, if you wish to discuss your request.

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When We Are Open For School Visits

Moor Road Headquarters

We offer Wednesdays in 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 page for details of our School Santa Trains on 1st and 2nd December 2021 (note: these will not appear on the page for the public 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 for contact details for the Education Team, to discuss your booking.

How Much Your Visit Will Cost

Once more, we are helping schools by maintaining our price structure:

Engine Type for the Ride Minimum Charge
Diesel Engine £100
Steam Engine £250

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

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How You Can Contact Us To Organise Your Visit

By telephone on 07376 744 799 (Monday to Friday, 10:00 am - 4:00 pm only, please)


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


By letter 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 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.

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We look forward to welcoming you and your students!

Engine Shed

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