One of the highlights of this time of year is by far going to see the Christmas production at Hull truck, and this years offering of Nesbit’s The Railway children did not disappoint. In fact, it was absolutely brilliant and loved by both my 9 & 11 year old, Grandma, and of course, moi!
I always love each one of Hull Truck’s takes on much loved Christmas stories – they bring entertainment, music, deep reflection and always meaningful Christmas messages to be enjoyed by all. Which for me, offer a refreshing theatre experience this time of year.
The railway children is one of my favourite stories and I have been looking forward to it since it was first advertised at Hull Truck back in 2019 (remember those days?!). Consequently I have been on tenterhook’s since – excited to see one of my childhood faves brought to life in one of my favourite theatres (it holds a lot of nostalgia from my teens). And It was wonderful to hop aboard with grandma and our eldest 2, to see a more mature Bobby, Peter and Phyllis take us on an adventure as they told of their former comfortable London lives (with a butler, maid and cook – oh that cook!) and the disruption and family difficulties that ensue when their father is whisked away at Christmas time. Consequently they are forced to leave London; with its familiarity and comforts, and move miles away to a dark, cold “Three Chimney’s” in rural Yorkshire! Here they meet new friends and neighbours, and develop a fascination and affinity to the nearby railway. Which of course becomes the heart of many of their stories, mishaps and adventures.
We wondered as we drove over how they would depict so much railway activity and grand Edwardian steam trains, but as always the stage and set were fabulously creative; with a moving circular track around the edge, a small crew of fantastic actors and an appearance of a large engine enveloped in steam at the end of the first half – WOW.
It captured our imaginations and had us each engrossed in all of the excitement of Oakworth station.
The Railway children is a warm-hearted, uplifting tale of hope, friendship and family. I love how it encapsulates traditional childhood and adventures we can only dream of – saving trains, people and families. I love how it shows that acts of kindness, sacrifice and generosity of self, friends and neighbours each help others to continue to have faith – faith that it’ll all come right in the end. What a message for Christmas time and what a treat to be in the audience!
It’s safe to say that I am feeling a little more festive after this wonderful evening out. But don’t just take my word for it, here is what the kiddo’s thought of it.
Ethan (Age 11) – Well first of all, the characters had great singing voices and their acting was great. I always love the lights at the theatre and you know what? The effects of when they were in the tunnel were so good – it made you think they were really in a tunnel with the train going by. It’s amazing what they did with the lights to make you think different things.
Yes, I really liked it.
Megan (Age 9) – It was amazing, wonderful, special, magical and Epic! My favourite character was Phyllis – she was really funny and made me laugh. I especially liked her part in the paper-chase scene – she was really funny. But, my favourite part was at the end when they see their dad again, because everyone was so smiley and happy. It made me want to be one of the railway children!
If you would like to see this much loved classic brought to life with a sprinkling of Christmas cheer, then hop aboard and trundle down to Hull Truck this month. It will have you smiling and filled with a little more joy!
The tickets range from £10 – £29.50 and it runs until the 2nd of January. All tickets can be Booked HERE
*Thank you to Hull Truck for giving us free press tickets in return for our reviews and opinions.