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Master Cutler - Friday Steam Train Dinner Experience

Great Central Railway, Leicestershire

  • Friday evening dining departures
  • On the Great Central 'Master Cutler' service
  • This is a steam-hauled dining trip
  • Four-course evening meal served at your table

What's Included

  • A 4-course dining experience plus coffee and mints onboard first class dining carriages hauled by a vintage steam locomotive
  • First class 'runabout' tickets for each passenger providing unlimited travel on the day of your meal
  • The journey lasts around two and a half hours
  • Travel through Quorn & Woodhouse and Rothley stations before pausing at Leicester North. Follow the same route back

What Can I Expect

All aboard the Master Cutler for your Friday steam train dinner experience! Hosted by the Great Central Railway, these wonderful Friday night first class dining car excursions are the perfect way to round off your week.

The Master Cutler (as in steel, as in Sheffield) was the name given to a ‘flagship' train that first did a return journey from Sheffield to Marylebone via the East Midlands in 1947, on this very same Great Central Line that you'll be travelling on.

The original Master Cutler left the metal-working city at 07:25 and returned from the capital everyday at 17:02. There have been various incarnations of the route and times since then, but even today, rail commuters on the East Midlands Mainline can catch the Master Cutler service.

One of the First Class dining coaches restored by the Great Central Railway trust actually worked on the Master Cutler journeys back in the 1950s, so bringing back this famous service for a Friday evening steam train dinner departure is very serendipitous!

You will board the steam train at the GCR Loughborough station and staff will show you to your seat in the First Class dining car. Departure is set for 19:30 and your return into Loughborough is scheduled for around 22:00.

As you glide along the Leicestershire countryside on this historic route, a delicious four-course meal will be served at your table. A typical menu includes mains of braised lamb, honey and garlic roast chicken breast or salmon and pesto, with veggie options available too. After a tasty dessert, your supper concludes with a cheeseboard, coffee and after dinner mints.

We are offering Great Central Railway Master Cutler Friday steam train dinner packages for four people sharing a table.


  • Selected Friday evenings throughout from March - October
  • Depart from Great Central Station at 19:30, returning at 22:00
  • Due to the popularity of this experience it is recommended to book well in advance to avoid disappointment

2024 Dates

  • Friday 29th March
  • Friday 26th April
  • Friday 24th May
  • Friday 14th June
  • Friday 12th July
  • Friday 13th September
  • Friday 11th October


  • The trains depart from the Great Central Station in Loughborough
  • The Central station has good access from the M1 (J23) and A6

Suitable For

  • On booking, the operator may ask for your choice of main course in advance
  • Minimum age 5
  • Under 18s must be accompanied by a participating adult


  • It is possible for friends and family to buy a platform ticket only so they can wave you off and there are things to do at the station, but the most convivial thing to do is buy vouchers so you can make a family or group day of it and all eat together!
  • Loughborough Central is where you will find a museum, station buffet and locomotive shed
  • You are welcome to visit the area outside the shed where most locomotives can be viewed, but access into the shed is restricted for security reasons
  • The operator can also assist and advise on local accommodation in the area

Anything Else

  • Additional drinks can be purchased from the onboard licenced bar
  • Please note that the menus and timetables are samples only and subject to change
  • Dining vouchers are not redeemable between 24 November 2023 and 2 January 2024