On my recent visit to the UK I was based in Swindon for two weeks. I had chosen Swindon as it was on the train line to London and it was central to the south west region of England. I bought a South West Flexi Rail pass and that meant I could have eight days of train travel during my two week stay. I can highly recommend the Flexi Pass as a great means of travel if you don’t want to hire a car.
The Steam museum of the Great Western Railway is one of the main tourist attractions in Swindon.
While I was looking after my granddaughter we visited the museum which is ideal for young children as well as adults. There are lots of interactive activities for little ones and my granddaughter had a great time.
The Steam Museum of the Great Western Railway is in the heart of the former Swindon Railway Works. The museum tells the story of the men and women who built, operated and travelled on the Great Western Railway, a network that, through the pioneering vision and genius of Isambard Kingdom Brunel, set the standard for rail travel.
This story is brought to life with famous GWR locomotives, imaginative story-telling displays, videos – mixing rare archive film footage with the stories of ex-railway workers – hands-on exhibits, interactive displays and a large number of rare GWR objects memorabilia. The museum is peopled by character figures life-cast from Swindon people – many of them former railway workers.
Stepping into the museum, visitors are taken into the world of the railway worker at Swindon, passing through a series of reconstructions, carefully assembled using original equipment, supported by video and interactive displays. (from the website)
The displays are excellent and you need to allocate at least a couple of hours to get the full benefit of the museum.
After visiting the museum you can then visit the Designer outlet which is nearby in grade II listed buildings from part of the Swindon Railway Works.