Yep you read that right a pub with a miniature railway in its back garden. Not only a miniature railway but a play park too! Ladies and gentlemen i give you FANCOTT PUB & MINIATURE RAILWAY.
Now I understand that this may be too big a journey for many of you. However for us with a train fanatic 5 year old and a husband that spends more time in the pub than at home. This was perfect! (Apparently he doesn’t read my blogs so this will be a good test)
Bit of a drive
It’s a bit of a drive but its a pretty one throughout lots of lovely little villages. It’s just under an hour from Bicester. The pub has plenty of parking and when we arrived we had to park in the overflow which was just over the level crossing much to Clark’s delight!
The first thing I spotted was the play park which was an added bonus that I wasn’t expecting. (probably something else for me to bitch about) The kids were straight on the play park while husband grabbed us a table outside.
We hadn’t had lunch so we grabbed drinks and menus. The Fancott pub is a gastro pub aka posh pub with an excuse to charge extra ?? in all honesty the pub was spotless, pretty and the service was spot on. It’s very rare you can walk into a pub these days and find all the staff polite, helpful and generally friendly.
Food ordered now time for our 1st go on the railway. I was expecting queues for miles but we did not once have to queue to get on. Absolutely perfect for our kids with the patience of a white van driver stuck behind a old person doing 30mph on a 60mph road.
The train was cute. All miniature railways are although some of the people running them can be a bit dodgy looking at times ? not this one though. Again all full of smiles and helpful attitudes! It was £2 A ride and this sends them round the loop twice which I think is good value for money.
Lots of creepy toys and teddies to spot on the way round too which the kids loved! Although if one of the kids wake with nightmares after seeing a bunny (stuffed one) hanging from a cage by its head i wouldn’t be surprised! I always panic these days getting on miniature railways after derailing one on a corner last year at a garden centre up north! The driver said it wasn’t me but i knew I’d had one pie too many. However fair play to the little engine it held my weight and still managed to shift pretty fast once we got round the first corner.
Ride over one more quick play on the playpark then lunch was ready. The food was simple but bloody good! We ordered chicken wraps and these wraps had chicken in! Not those shitty wraps you order and when you bite in you realise it’s got more lettuce in than chicken this was full. At least 1 full chicken breast each! Kids had nuggets and for once they looked lovely! They were homemade chicken nuggets with cornflakes by the looks of it (probably stole Annabel karmels recipe) kids Wolfed it down. For all 4 of us to eat it cost us £25 which for the quality and services we thought was a fair price.
Lunch demolished Elliot shot off onto the playpark again. The playpark itself is pretty good for a back garden pub one. There were only a few bum clenching moments when Elliot thought he could do a firemans pole without any help! The parks probably better for 4years plus but we had no issues following Elliot around preventing his death. If you’ve got older kids you’re lucky you’ll be able to have a chat and a rest while the kids play. It wasn’t overly busy but nicely busy.
While Elliot was on the park Clark had his 2nd go on the train. We let him on alone this time he was perfectly safe and we had no worries whatsoever. I’ve not heard of any deaths or abductions while on a miniature railway but i wont Google it because no doubt there will be at least one! While Clark was going round I popped up to the bridge and watched him go round all the time he was waving happily.
Clark also got to hide a family ticket rock which was found and the lovely boys mum has posted to say it’s been found. Wonder how far it’ll travel??
THE FANCOTT PUB & MINIATURE RAILWAY STATS:
Distance from Bicester: 55 mins
Sat nav: Luton Rd, Luton, Toddington, Dunstable LU5 6HT
Wheelchair friendly: yes
Equipment upkeep: 9/10
Facilities: 10/10 pub, toilets, parking etc
Age range: All ages
Fun factor: 10/10
Dog friendly: No!
This is a pub we will 100% go back to and probably take friends (if we can find any). You could spend a brilliant afternoon here chatting away while the kids play. I’m a bit jealous of the pub because of lack of kid friendly pubs around Bicester (not saying there aren’t any) this has now spurred me into a new mission to find kid friendly pubs in and around Bicester. So any suggestions will be kindly welcomed 🙂 adults like pubs and adults like pubs even more if their kids are entertained!
For more pub reviews click HERE
For the fancott pub & miniture railway’s website click HERE