Train enthusiast Mike Naylor was left well and truly chuffed after a Dorset dementia care home arranged for a taster experience on the Swanage Railway.
Mike, 83, a resident at Colten Care’s Fernhill home in Longham, enjoyed a behind-the-scenes ride on the footplate of one of the heritage railway’s steam locomotives.
He also had exclusive access to watch the driver and fireman in action as the loco covered the five and a half miles between Swanage, Corfe Castle and Norden and then back again.
Mike’s verdict on the hour-long experience?
“He absolutely loved it and hasn’t stopped talking about it ever since,” said Ann-Marie Knight, a member of Fernhill’s companionship team who accompanied Mike.
She added: “Swanage Railway pulled out all the stops to give Mike a fantastic experience, even presenting him with a goody bag with a framed certificate and driver experience mug.
“In regular meetings with residents that we call ‘My Time’ we ask if they have any particular wishes and then, wherever possible, try to fulfil them. Mike’s Swanage Railway wish came out of the blue. He now wants to visit Salisbury Cathedral so that will be our next challenge.”