Newcomer to the rail tours scene, Westcountry Railtours, has been forced to cancel its first tour, which they hoped would herald its successful entry into the rail tours market.
Westcountry Railtours had been set up to specialize in tours to both the West Country and other parts of the UK. The train operating company that Westcountry had planned to use informed them that they were unable to provide the necessary traction and conductors for the circuits, and that they could not accept any offers for additional circuits at the future.
Westcountry Railtours pointed out that this could be a coincidence, but it happened just days after they informed the planned train operating company that the restrictions they had imposed on tour pick-up points and Operating locations were inconvenient.
The first tour was due to take place on Saturday June 11 from Paignton, Torquay, Newton Abbot, Teignmouth, Dawlish, Exeter St. David’s, Tiverton Parkway and Taunton to Stratford-upon-Avon and Warwick. Times had been planned so that passengers had about five hours at their destination. They would have had plenty of time to explore Warwick Castle, a visit to the British Motor Museum or a cruise on the River Avon followed by an exploration of the delights of Shakespeare’s birthplace.
The company is in talks with other rolling stock and train operators to see if a suitable alternative can be found, with one already showing real interest in the operation. Inevitably, this could take some time and delay the start of their rail touring schedule for 2022 as they make the necessary arrangements.
A full refund will be issued to everyone who booked the first round, with refunds being issued within the next 14 days. The company will update everyone on the progress as soon as possible, hopefully within the next 28 days.
Obviously this is very disappointing news, but Westcountry Railtours is working hard to overcome the issues and move forward.