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Yes I know that the Hollycombe Working Steam Museum is a volunteer run charitable trust, and I am prepared to cut them some slack, but when youʼve paid the full admission price only to find that half the exhibits are not available, it is difficult not to feel short changed.

The traction engines were mostly covered in tarpaulins, the sawmill and PS Caledonia engine were fenced off and inaccessible, and it did not look like anyone had been near the steam farm exhibit for some months.

Only the fairground and the railways were fully operational, as the beam engine was undergoing repairs.

That said the Quarry Railway was excellent. Climbing to the top of the hill and pausing at some viewpoints, it felt a bit more like a mountain railway than a garden line.

The fact that our locomotive Jerry M, came from the Dinorwic slate quarries near Llanberis, only helped.

There was plenty to enjoy in the fairground as well, and plenty of people enjoying it. Some of the best rides were the simplest and were not even steam driven. I particularly enjoyed the haunted house, just maze-like passage in a blacked out room with weird floors and walls that you had to grope your way round. That, and the inevitable distorting mirrors.

The woodland gardens are worth a visit. Once a formal garden on the side of the hill, now gradually slipping back into the landscape.

For opening times, admission prices, etc. please see the official site detailed below. This also details special events when hopefully the place will be fully functional.