Thursday, 7 August 2014

Treasure Trails - East Lancashire Railway

We have just got back from a day out doing another Treasure Trail.  This one took in the East Lancashire Railway and had us hopping on and off the train during the day.  We parked up right next to the station, with plenty of spaces to choose from which was the first surprise!  Parking for the whole day was only £5 which was good value compared to the prices round our way!

Before starting the Trail we all chose a murder weapon and a suspect.  They had some brilliant names!  The Trail is based on the murder of Billy Bonka who was murdered on his way to the Ramsbottom Chocolate Festival.  A chocolate festival?  What more could I want?  Anyway, I digress, the list of suspects included Mal Teaser, Emma Nems, Toby Lerone, Carrie-Mel Barr and Wally Nutwhip to name a few.

The first 4 clues were on the station, so we solved those whilst waiting for our steam train to arrive.  They were all easy to find so we moved on to the Little Grey Cell game whereby we had to come up with as many words (3 letters or more) as we could from the words TREASURE TRAILS.  Between us we came up with over 100 but we still need to do a final count up.

Our first stop of Irwell Vale was a quaint, sleepy village where people actually say hello to you as they pass by.  Again, the clues here were easy to find and we had plenty of time to sit at the station to wait for our train returning.  I imagine that not many people alight at Irwell Vale as the guard seemed surprised that we were getting off there!  It was pretty and picturesque but I think the 20 minutes spent walking around is probably as long as you need.

Returning the way we came but getting off at Ramsbottom this time. Somebody obviously had a sense of humour and a piece of chalk!

We were easily following the clues which were clearly written and crossing off suspects with alacrity.  When we arrived at the giant vase, we decided to finish off our lunch.

There was one particular shop that we were keen to find - The Chocolate Cafe! Apparently it has chocolate pizza!!!!!  As we ate lunch, I wondered where it could be and would I look a total idiot if I put it into my phone's GPS and walked round with that? On the way to the bin to dispose of the rubbish I noticed it...approximately 20 yards from where we had been sitting!  Doh!  We did another clue and then hit The Chocolate Cafe!

We decided to have a slice of cake each with a glass of water as 'dessert' after lunch.  I can heartily recommend the lemon drizzle cake...oh my word...divine!  And the size of it!  HUGE!  Rachael had Rocky Road and it looked the best one I have ever seen.

I was disappointed to see no chocolate pizza on the menu though.  After eating the cake, we went downstairs and looked at the shop! There it is...chocolate pizza!!!  What a disappointment though, we were all expecting real chocolate pizza and it wasn't.  It was a huge chocolate button with various chocolate toppings to look like the things you would have on a pizza. So there were some lemon/lime chocolate drops to represent something green on the pizza - peppers? chillis?  Who knows!  On the plus side though, we did succumb to a chocolate bar each.  Dark chocolate with toasted hazelnut, milk chocolate with bubblegum, milk chocolate tiramisu and white chocolate rocky road.  We haven't tried them yet, so I can't tell you what they are like.

Then we continued the Treasure Trail to the successful conclusion.  Colin chose the correct murder weapon and Rachael had the right person.  I was the first to go out with both my choices :(

Of course, I have forgotten the best bit!  There was a shop called Clark's Crafts right by the station and it had a large cross stitch section.  I picked up 2 Just Nan charts for 33p each! I think they may originally have been complementary charts if you bought charms or something.  One was My Fair Ladybug and the other was Bee Hive Violets.  Both look like they will be very pretty stitched. I also got Rosebuds for £2.40 and a couple of other little bits and pieces.  They had a huge section of old leaflets too which I really wanted to have a proper root through, however after being in there about an hour, both children were getting a little antsy!

So we have had a brilliant day out doing a well written and thoroughly enjoyable Treasure Trail whilst doing some other fun things too.  The train ride was brilliant and both children liked it despite being teenagers!  The staff were great and made the journey fun with the way they interacted with the younger children.  Highly recommended if you are in the area for the day :)


Linda said...

Sounds like an absolutely awesome day Sharon. Sure wish there was things like that around here.


stitchersanon said...

Oh my gosh...trains, chocolate and really doesnt get any better than that. I love trains!

Annette-California said...

LOL Day spent with your children, Murder Mystery game, train rides, chocolate cake (YUM) and cross stitch shopping:)))))) Perfect!!
love Annette
ps those charts you picked up sound so lovley.

Mii Stitch said...

Wish I was there :)

Brigitte said...

Absolutely great adventures on your day out. So many things to do for you and the kids. And even a visit at a craft store, what could you want more :)

Andrea said...

Sounds like you all had a very adventurous day.

Jo who can't think of a clever nickname said...

What a brilliant day out, sounds like just the sort of thing the Large Boy and I would enjoy.

Shame it would take 6 hours to get to the start point first LOL

Chocolate pizza is the only kind I would eat; I don't eat cheese.

The JN charts were complimentary ones, some given out to shops to give to their customers when they bought other JN charts.