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You are in: Norfolk » A Sense Of Place

18 September 2003 1923 BST
Explore Norfolk on the new Boat Train

The new Boat Train is a relaxing way to explore the city and the beautiful Norfolk Broads.
Visitors to Norwich are being encouraged to leave their cars at home and take a trip through the city on the new 'Boat Train'.

Anglia Rail
City Boats

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bullet point. Cruises depart seven days a week, with three routes to choose from: the city, broads or county cruises.
bullet point.   All tickets cost £10 per adult and £6 per child and include a return rail ticket to any station on the Norwich - Sheringham and Norwich - Great Yarmouth/Lowestoft lines.
bullet point.   Events include ghost stories, every Wednesday and Friday and murder mystery evenings on Thursdays.
bullet point.   "Show Boats" depart from Station Quay every Saturday with live music on board. Tickets cost £15 and include a return rail ticket.
bullet point.   All inclusive Boat Train fares are also available on Anglia Railways' new service between Norwich and Cambridge and on the London - Norwich main line.
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Day trippers to Norwich can now take the train to the city and transfer to a boat for a sightseeing tour of the city and the Broads.

City Boats have teamed up with Anglia Railways to offer tourists a stress-free train journey, followed by a relaxing day exploring the waterways, all on one ticket.

The idea for the Boat Train, which was officially launched on Sunday 1 June, signals a new partnership between City Boats and the Bittern Line and Wherry Lines Community Rail Partnerships.

Stephen Maiden of the Wherry Lines Community said the Boat Train was an enjoyable way to explore the city:

Pic: windmill on the Broads
Windmill on the Norfolk Broads

"I think the biggest advantage is that it is completely relaxed. You don’t have to worry about parking, you don’t have to worry about traffic congestion, you can get straight on the train at the local station and enjoy a very pleasant day out."

The cost of the return train journey together with the boat cruise is included in the price of the ticket. Boats leave from Station Quay opposite the Norwich railway station at various times throughout the day.

Mervyn High who owns City Boats said there's a range of different trips depending on your taste:

"You’ve got everything from a 35 minute trip through the city’s bridges, you’ve also got a two hour tour to outer Thorpe St Andrew and in the afternoon we have an afternoon tea cruise which is three and a quarter hours out, at Surlingham Broad returning via Brundall."

The new Boat Train is seen as an important way to attract visitors to the city. It is also an opportunity to make greater use of the rivers.

Pic: Pulls Ferry in Norwich
Pulls Ferry in Norwich

Marketing director of the Norwich Area Tourism Agency Geoff Skipper said it was an innovative way to encourage more people out of their cars.

"We have this wonderful asset in the city which we haven’t made enough use of and I think that is a starting point," he said.

"It brings people in not in their cars, so people can come by train from Lowestoft, Great Yarmouth, from the North Norfolk lines and go straight from the train onto a boat," he added.

The Boat Train aims to bring both the history and the future of Norwich together. Geoff Skipper said it was an enjoyable way to see the city:

"The great thing about the boat is that you go one way and then you go back the other way so you can what ‘s happening on the other side of the river, so you see the history of Norwich and the development that’s going on at the moment."

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