Oxfordshire Home Guard helps to protect and celebrate the Chinnor and Princes Risborough Railway’s 25th anniversary over the August Bank Holiday
The four mile long former Great Western Steam Railway between Chinnor and Princes Risborough will be busy with wartime traffic for a 1940s event coinciding with the Chinnor and Princes Risborough Railway celebrating the 25th anniversary of operating trains over the holiday weekend.
The ‘Spirit of the 1940s’ event on Sunday 25 and Bank Holiday Monday 26 August will bring The Oxfordshire Home Guard and some American Jeeps to guard the Chinnor station car park. They will also patrol the steam trains making the eight mile one hour round trip along the line watching over passengers to make sure no spies are travelling.
They will also be guarding a bomb site while 1940s style professional singers Sparky and Sprite will be performing live and there’ll be exhibitions depicting Wartime Britain. During the one-hour steam train ride, pre-recorded interviews of local people who grew up in the Chinnor area in wartime will be broadcast.
1940s stars such as Gracie Fields, George Formby, Anne Shelton, Flanagan & Allen ( and Vera Lynn of course) plus a host of other great names will be heard via the station Tannoy each day.
The Railway staff have been tending a station vegetable patch to remind you of the food shortages while the adjacent wartime canteen will be serving up a taste of the 40’s, including Spam sandwiches. The line has been closed west of Chinnor to Watlington due to enemy action.
An anonymous Home Guard spokesman said: “Please inform me of any Fifth Columnists in the area spying on the steam train operations. This will be particularly relevant at lunchtime when a special army goods service will be passing through the Chinnor station – guarded by the Home Guard”.
The Railway Superintendent has requested passengers dress in 1940s attire to make it an even more amazing event. Vintage vehicles will add to the scenes around the Chinnor station.
Children can travel all day for just £1 and trains depart Chinnor between 0930 and 1610 and Princes Risborough between 1000 and 1630 each day.