We are delighted to invite you aboard the luxurious and historic Belmond British Pullman train on December 16 for a Christmas event to remember—a five-star rail journey from London to Canterbury with fine wining and dining on board, to see a candlelit performance of carols in Canterbury Cathedral.
Expect luxury, history, festivities, culture, fine food and wine, and glorious live music on this unforgettable day, travelling through the Garden of England from London Victoria station, complete with fine dining, Champagne and wine to rival the best London restaurants. Originally conceived as ‘Palaces on Wheels’ by George Mortimer Pullman, each lavishly appointed carriage is an original 1920s and ’30s masterpiece from the golden age of rail travel.
Lovingly restored with breathtaking attention to detail, each car is a symphony of intricate marquetry, inlaid mosaic floors, sparkling crystal and beautiful Art Deco design. You will be travelling in style in beautifully restored original named 1920s carriages, all of them with their own tales of history and romance: ‘Audrey’, regularly used by the Royal Family, carried the Queen, the Queen Mother and the Duke of Edinburgh to review the Fleet in 1953; ‘Phoenix’ was the Queen Mother’s favourite; and ‘Perseus’ formed part of the funeral train for Sir Winston Churchill.
Their exquisite design and workmanship is legendary. Art Deco lamps cast a soft glow over polished brass and gleaming mahogany, while plump armchairs provide a supremely comfortable experience. The British Pullman offers passengers the chance to step back in time and experience luxury train travel as it was—and should be. With its original, fully restored 1920s Art Deco carriages and exceptional service delivered by liveried stewards, the train evokes the golden age of travel, when travellers were elegantly dressed and had the time to relax and enjoy their journey.
We too shall relax and enjoy our journey as we board the train in London Victoria Station on the morning of December 15. We shall settle into our plush seats and raise a toast with a sparkling Bellini cocktail to toast the day ahead.
Each elegant table is set with crisp white linen and bespoke china and glassware for the exquisite three-course brunch to follow. As we savour each gastronomic dish we can take time to admire the beautiful marquetry and Art Deco features which surround us. We can sit back and relax as liveried stewards take care of our every need, while we enjoy delightful views of the Kent countryside through the Pullman’s large picture windows.
Canterbury—and England’s first ever cathedral—awaits. The Cathedral is magnificent—famous for its role in the coronations of the Kings and Queens of England and infamous as the location of the murder of Thomas Becket in 1170. The Cathedral itself is vast‚ and beneath its soaring columns and stained glass lies the oldest and one of the most interesting and architecturally important features of Canterbury Cathedral—the Norman Crypt.
The Crypt of Canterbury Cathedral is famous in its own right, and the subject of a drawing by Turner. This is the scene of our Christmas carol performance—a stunning and evocative part of our history, one of the largest undercroft complexes in any English church. The Crypt’s massive stone pillars lead up to intricately carved Romanesque capitals and splendid early-Norman vaulting—these capitals have been described as ‘the most ambitious, most finely conceived, and … best preserved Early Romanesque sculpture in the country.’ Here, lit by candlelight, we shall be treated to a choral performance of carols by the highly regarded choir, the Canterbury Singers, a 30 to 40-strong chamber choir who are regular performers here in the Cathedral. It will surely be a highly moving occasion, and a joyful start to our Christmas.
After the performance there will be time to explore the Cathedral further, or to step out onto the cobbled streets of Canterbury itself for sightseeing or shopping—and for a festive ambience head to the traditional Christmas Market in Whitefriars Square to browse handcrafted gifts and decorations—before being whisked back to the British Pullman for a Champagne reception to begin our return journey in suitable style.
Soon, a delicious four-course dinner will be served, complemented by the sommelier’s selection of wines. The talented chefs serve British dishes with an innovative twist. Enticing menus celebrate the culinary highlights of the towns and cities we pass. So now it’s time to relax, sip wine and Champagne, and enjoy each gastronomic course in the warm surroundings of this historic vintage train. Travel aboard Belmond British Pullman really does make the journey as magical as the destination. The memories will linger on.
BOOK NOW FOR THIS FABULOUS CHRISTMAS 2021 EVENT
The cost is usually £435 per person but CountryClubuk Members have the advantageous price of £399.
This wonderful event includes:
Round-trip travel aboard the Belmond British Pullman luxury train
Welcome sparkling Bellini
Delicious three-course brunch on the outward journey
Carols with the Canterbury Singers at the Cathedral
Free time for shopping and sightseeing
Champagne reception back on board
Sumptuous four-course dinner: British seasonal table d’hôte menu
Half a bottle of wine per person
Coffee, tea and petits fours
RRP £435 per person. CCUK Members £397 per person including VAT. Please call the Member Services team to make your reservations on 020 7399 2960.