A CHILDHOOD dream of becoming a train driver was realised for many rail enthusiasts at a North-East museum yesterday (Saturday, September 28).

Locomotion, the National Railway Museum at Shildon in County Durham offered the Driver for a Fiver experience as part a volunteer recruitment drive.

For five pounds, visitors could drive a 1960 03 diesel shunter locomotive for ten minutes – an opportunity that was a dream come true for many train fans.

John David Whitfield, of Middridge, near Newton Aycliffe, was one of the first to give it a go.

“It was fantastic, a great experience,” he said. “It is something I have always wanted to do so when I heard about the opportunity I had to take advantage of it.

“I loved every minute of it.”

The Driver for a Fiver experience formed part of the Have a Go Gala, which was designed to show visitors how they can support the museum through volunteering.

Information packs were distributed detailing the various volunteer roles available, including working on the railway, helping out in the workshop and gardens and improving access to vehicle displays.

Sandra Rewcastle, a team leader at Locomotion, said: “Volunteers are extremely important to us. We certainly couldn’t run the railway without them.”

To find out more, visit the Locomotion webpage on nrm.org.uk or call 01388 777999.