Museum reports record numbers at Edwardian Tea Room

Vicki Linton with son Jacob and Lisa Fenton with daugher Freya.
Vicki Linton with son Jacob and Lisa Fenton with daugher Freya.

Whitehead Railway Museum’s Edwardian Tea Room has reported its busiest day since opening in 2017.

The record-breaking numbers were enjoyed as the Railway Preservation Society of Ireland hosted

Centenary celebration for No.3BG Guinness locomotive.

Centenary celebration for No.3BG Guinness locomotive.

Centenary celebrations for its first steam locomotive No.3BG Guinness.

The 1919 engine, named after Arthur Guinness, was built to shunt wagons between the brewery at St. James’ Gate in Dublin and the nearby Kingsbridge (now Heuston) station.

A century on, hundreds of party-goers enjoyed face-painting, balloon modelling and train rides.

The birthday cake was cut by RPSI chairman John McKegney, with help from Jacob Linton (7) and Freya Fenton (5), winner and runner-up of a colouring-in competition organised by the museum in conjunction with Whitehead Primary School.

John McKegney, RPSI chairman with colouring competition prize winners Jacob Linton and Freya Fenton.

John McKegney, RPSI chairman with colouring competition prize winners Jacob Linton and Freya Fenton.

Also present was former RPSI chairman John Harcourt who was among those who negotiated the original arrangement for No.3BG to be presented to the society. The Edwardian Tea Room was bustling with guests, whilst pop up plays by The Big Telly Theatre Company brought one of the dining cars to life as guests were transported back to the 1930s. These were a taster of performances at the location on May 24 and 25 as part of the Shaped by Industry – Shared with Pride programme.

Siobhan Dillon, acting general manager of the museum said: “The celebrations were fantastic and a true reflection of what the museum is; full of fun, exploration and historical charm. The Guinness Engine is just one example of the fantastic restoration works carried out by skilled volunteers and engineers on site.

“We are now looking forward to our next festivities as we mark the Easter holidays and we are delighted to be opening on additional days including Easter Monday and Easter Tuesday.”

Actors from The Big Telly Theatre Company performing at Whitehead.

Actors from The Big Telly Theatre Company performing at Whitehead.