Tag Archives: railway

Sparkling Sundays at Babbacombe Cliff Railway

Take the little ones for a ride on Babbacombe Cliff Railway this year and visit the Station down at Oddicombe Beach where they can write their letter to Father Christmas. With elves, a singing polar bear and plenty of festive spirit this lovely event is something a little bit different from what’s on offer elsewhere in the bay.

Both stations and the carriages will be decorated, sparkling and ready for lots of Christmas cheer and the Top Station will once again feature the spectacular Cliff Railway Sleigh and Reindeer, ideal for some very festive photo opportunities before travelling down to the beach.

On arrival at the bottom the children will have a chance to write and post their letter Santa with plenty of help. There will be mulled wine and mince pies for accompanying adults and some special little gifts for the children to take home. The event is being run with the much appreciated support of the Friends of Babbacombe Cliff Railway and the St Marychurch branch of Sainsbury’s.

Sparkling at Babbacombe Cliff Railway

This special event in the run up to Christmas will run on the three Sundays in the December, the 7th, 14th and 21st from 11am to 3pm. Tickets are just £2.50 per child and the normal £2 return price per adult. The Cliff Railway team look forward to seeing you soon. Oh, and don’t forget your camera for some pictures of the children with the wonderful sleigh. For more information visit www.babbacombecliffrailway.co.uk or www.facebook.com/babbcliffrail

Historic Attraction looks to the Future

August was a very busy month for historic, local attraction, Babbacombe Cliff Railway. Although it was built in1926 it has been owned and run by a specially set up Community Interest Company (CIC) for the past five years. The Company is made up of a Board of voluntary Directors who in turn employ just 6 members of staff to ensure that the 100,000 people who travel on the Cliff Railway each year do so safely and happily.

Babbacombe Ukulele Festival

In August there were two special events to mark the first five years of CIC ownership. The first was an evening Reception held at the Bay Trecarn Hotel to thank all the many volunteers, local businesses and groups who have helped make the railway the success it now is. The Trecarn Hotel is the latest local business to link up with the Cliff Railway and is now holding regular fundraising events and supporting operations wherever possible. In fact, Hotel Manager, Steve King, has just joined the Board of Directors of the Railway. Steve said “I am delighted to be so involved with Babbacombe Cliff Railway, both personally and on behalf of the hotel. It’s an amazing local attraction and I believe it’s vital that it is looked after and treasured for future generations. To be part of a group so dedicated to ensuring that happens is very inspiring and I’m looking forward to getting more involved.”

Ukuleles on Oddicombe Beach

Board Chairman, John Ayres, said “We are absolutely thrilled that Steve has joined the Board. We are lucky enough to have a great bunch of people both on the Board and as volunteers. The mix of skills and experience within the group is what makes the Cliff Railway the success it is. We take the business of running Babbacombe Cliff Railway very seriously but we also get along very well and respect each other’s opinions. Between us I believe we are doing a great job of taking care of the Cliff Railway and running it in a way that ensures it will continue to prosper for many years to come.” He added “It was wonderful to have our special fifth anniversary Reception as it gave us an opportunity to show everyone who has contributed how important they all are to the Cliff Railway”.

In fact, John was so keen to ensure that he thanked everyone that, instead of the usual speeches one would expect at such an occasion, he read a poem that he had written specially for the event and which can be read in full on the Cliff Railway website.

After an evening of merry-making, a family party day took place down on Oddicombe Beach in the form of the first ever Babbacombe Ukulele Festival with performances by ukulele bands from Babbacombe, Hatherleigh, Torbay, Marldon and Newton Abbot. On the Saturday morning, a large marquee was put up on the promenade and for over four hours live music was enjoyed by lots of people on a day of spectacular sunshine. John said “One of the reasons for having a marquee was so that there would be shelter if the weather was bad. In the end it was used as much-needed shade as we were treated to a glorious sunny day. The whole event was a huge success and I’m very much hoping it was the first of many ukulele festivals to come so watch this space.”

Anniversary fun on the Beach

As well as the Board and staff the Cliff Railway has lots of volunteers who help run the Visitor Centre down on Oddicombe Beach. The Visitor Centre opened in April 2012. It’s free to look around and has proved extremely popular with locals and holidaymakers alike. Badly damaged in the storms this February, it was redecorated, re-stocked and open in time for Easter. The Cliff Railway is always keen to hear from anyone who may like to volunteer in the Visitor Centre even for just a few hours a week. So, if you are interested in being part of the future of Babbacombe Cliff Railway e-mail info@babbacombecliffrailway.co.uk or pop into the Visitor Centre and see Sarah Foley, who co-ordinates all the volunteers.

Babbacombe Cliff Railway is open every day from 9.30am and their next special event is a mystery to solve as part of the Agatha Christie Festival. On Saturday 20 September the team will take you back to the 1920s and ask you to help solve the “Flight of the Babbacombe Smuggler”. With suspects to question and live music from High Society the fun starts at midday and is totally free to take part although usual Cliff Railway travel charges apply. For more information visit www.babbacombecliffrailway.co.uk or follow them on Facebook or Twitter.

Fifth Anniversary Celebrations at Babbacombe Cliff Railway

This August marks the fifth anniversary of historic local attraction, Babbacombe Cliff Railway, being owned and managed by a specially set up Community Interest Company. Run by a voluntary Board of Directors the railway has gone from strength to strength in recent years and transports around 100,000 people a year up and down the cliffs from Babbacombe Downs to Oddicombe Beach.

To celebrate this a very special anniversary afternoon is planned on Saturday 2 August. Designed to be a family event there is entertainment for the children, including free face painting and fun tattoos with some balloon modelling as well. But the key part of the day is the Babbacombe Ukulele Festival which is bringing together five local ukulele groups to play and sing and entertain the crowds throughout the afternoon. An open-sided marquee will be on the promenade with plenty of seating and visitors are encouraged to come along and enjoy several hours of live music.

Babbacombe Cliff Railway CIC Chairman, John Ayres, said “We’re very excited about this event. It’s wonderful to have had five successful years running the Cliff Railway and we’re hoping for many more successful ones to come.” He added “As one of the founding members of the Babbacombe Ukulele Strummers, it’s particularly nice to be able to bring the two together. We’ve got ukulele bands from Babbacombe, Hatherleigh, Torbay, Marldon and Newton Abbot so should have some fantastic music on offer from 12.30pm to 4pm. The plan is for everyone to play a few songs en masse at the end too so should be a great afternoon.”

After the devastating storms earlier in the year, the Cliff Railway Visitor Centre down on Oddicombe Beach is open again and welcoming lots of visitors each day. There are also now catering vans on the beach, after the Café was badly damaged so ice creams, drinks and all sorts of tasty delights are available to those visiting Oddicombe.

The event is free to attend although normal Cliff Railway charges apply to travellers. Starting at 12 noon when there will also be a number of charity stalls to browse make sure you pop in and help celebrate this latest milestone for Babbacombe Cliff Railway which transported its first passengers back in 1926. For more information visit www.babbacombecliffrailway.co.uk

5th Anniversary Celebrations

Have a Crafty Easter at Babbacombe Cliff Railway

This Easter Sunday, 20 April, Babbacombe Cliff Railway is offering a selection of fun Easter crafts for children.  This special event, which will run from 10am to 4pm, is called Babbacombe Bunny’s Easter Crafts.  Children are invited to go along to the Cliff Railway and get crafty with glitter, glue and all sorts of exciting bits and pieces.

Once a creation has been made, it’s off to find the Babbacombe Bunny who will be giving all hard-working children an Easter Egg (while stocks last).  There’s no charge for this event it’s just a special Easter treat for children travelling on the Cliff Railway that day.

Babbacombe Bunny

When the powerful storms in February battered the Cliff Railway Visitor Centre on Oddicombe Beach some contents were lost to sea and others were rescued in a night-time operation by volunteers.  This incredibly popular attraction at the far end of the beach was then been boarded up until the worst of the weather had passed and it could be dried out and made safe.  Now, after a lot of hard work, the Visitor Centre will be open to the public once again from Monday 14 April and it’s hoped that lots of people will go down to Oddicombe Beach this Easter to see the transformation.

In the meantime, in the run-up to Easter keep up to date with the whereabouts of the Babbacombe Bunny by following its antics on the Cliff Railway Facebook page at www.facebook.com/babbcliffrail


Free Flower treat for every Mum

This Mother’s Day, Sunday 30 March, every Mum travelling on Babbacombe Cliff Railway will be given a free flower.  This is the 3rd year that the Railway has given out these little Mother’s Day treats and it’s always popular.

Marketing Manager, Nicky Allen, said “It’s a simple idea but often the simplest gestures are the ones that are most appreciated.  We’ll have a basket of flowers at the Top Station and, when tickets to use the railway are purchased, any Mums in the group will get a free flower.”  She added “A lot of people go out for lunch on Mother’s Day and Babbacombe Downs and Oddicombe Beach are the perfect locations for a post-lunch stroll so we get quite a lot of people using the Cliff Railway on that day.  The flowers are always appreciated which is why we’ve decided to run with the idea again this year.”  Please note that the offer will run only while stocks last.

The Cliff Railway has been open for the 2014 season since mid February but the Visitor Centre down on Oddicombe Beach, which opened a couple of years ago, is still boarded up after the storm damage at the beginning of February.  Work will start very soon on getting it ready to open again as soon as possible.

To keep up to date with progress, and all the news about this charming, historic treasure, have a look at the website, www.babbacombecliffrailway.co.uk or follow the regular updates posted on the Facebook page at www.facebook.com/babbcliffrail