A NEW luxury Observation carriage which has been built for a 'much-loved' Railway in Cumbria has finally arrived.

The new carriage which offers panoramic views through its large glass windows has travelled from Ffestiniog and Welsh Highland Railways in Wales to Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway.

It has been built to a similar design as Ffestiniog Railway's Pullman, which launched in May 2018, but its dramatically different in size as the Welsh railway operates full scale engines whereas Ravenglass works on small 'narrow gauge' engines.

Martin Cookman, Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway Operations Manager, said the engineering team were working closely with a team at Ffestiniog to redesign the closed carriages to increase the levels of comfort for passengers.

“Ffestiniog & Welsh Highland Railways are leaders in the field of steam train engineering which is why we are so chuffed to be working with them on this project," he said. "With the carriage, we are going to use it to decide the size of the new rolling stock replacements. It is far taller, longer and wider than any of our current carriages and will need to complete hundreds of hours safety track testing before the first passengers can get on board."

Ffestiniog & Welsh Highland Railways General Manager Paul Lewin said the organisation was pleased to have been part of the team that designed and built the first of a fleet of carriages. "We know that it will transform the customer experience of the Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway," he said " This carriage will offer modern day visitors the chance to experience the comfort of the golden age of travel.”

Once a full safety testing has been carried out there will be an official launch ceremony to mark the occasion later this year, a date is still yet to be announced.