About Us

Pathfinder Tours have been happily based in Gloucestershire for many years, offering a wide programme of special trains for those who just love to travel by rail, or perhaps want a relaxing day out to a destination or event of great interest. We even cater for those with an enthusiastic interest in the country's complex rail system, whether the modern scene or looking back to the days of steam.

 

In these modern days, where 'green' and 'environmental impact' have become buzz words, we believe that we can be proud of offering great days out whilst lessening the impact on our surroundings. 500 passengers, one locomotive and twelve carriages certainly seems a better deal than maybe 200 plus cars... and it is a more relaxing journey, especially if you are the car driver!

 

The core Pathfinder Team deal with the organising and administration in our small comfy office at Woodchester, twixt Stroud and Nailsworth on the A46. Come the day of running and we have a great team of volunteer stewards who immensely enjoy looking after the days passengers. Some of the Pathfinder Team are shown below...

 

Meet the Office Team

Peter

Peter.  © Hannah Watts

"I am General Manager of the company, and have many years experience of organising special excursion trains. You will often see me leading the volunteer team of stewards aboard the trains, doing our best to give everyone a memorable day out.

 

Away from the rails I love nothing more than enjoying a competitive game of league tennis for my club at Chalford Hill!"

 

 

 

 

Wendy

Wendy.  © Hannah Watts

"Hi, I'm Wendy! I run the booking office along with my colleagues Joy and Tina. My hobbies include gardening, walking, jogging and looking after my grandchildren."

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hannah

"I have been involved with Pathfinder Tours for as long as I can remember, having travelled on the trains with my Dad [Peter] - as I have grown so has my involvement! In 2005 I began stewarding and in 2010 I joined the office team. I now work part time for Pathfinder Tours, where my roles vary from promotional work to organising the Scottish landcruises! On many trains you will find me leading the team of volunteer stewards.

 

In my spare time I enjoy horse riding and swimming."

 

 

Our Family of Stewards

Andy P

Andy P.  © Martin Treacher

"I have been stewarding with Pathfinder Tours for 27 years and enjoy all types of trains (particularly those hauled by English Electric locomotives). In this time I have got to know a lot of passengers. I have a Railway Engineering background and my other interests include Bus Preservation and Brass Bands."

 

 

 

 

 

 

Craig

Craig.  © Martin Treacher

"I work for Network Rail as a signalman but enjoy stewarding for Pathfinder Tours in my free time. I have been involved with the company since 1984 when they were known as F&W Railtours and I have been stewarding for a number of years."

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

David

"After retiring from my worldwide Civil Engineering career in 2015, I returned to the UK and treated some of my close family members to a trip on the Pathfinder Tours 'Autumn Chieftain', a four day landcruise to Scotland. Having been impressed by the Pathfinder Tours team and having been interested in railways since my youth, I applied to become a steward. I have now been stewarding for Pathfinder Tours and The Torbay Express for two years and in this time have enjoyed interacting with customers with the aim of helping them to enjoy a memorable day out. My other interests include walking, cycling, watching sport on TV and supporting my local rugby team (Exeter Chiefs)."

 

 

Gary

"I started as a fireman working on steam locomotives for British Railways at Bristol Bath Road in 1959 until 1968 and have worked in transport ever since. My roles have included working for Eddie Stobart as their training manager and in 1987 I started my own coach company (Chauffeurhire) in Chipping Sodbury. I retired in 2015 and, a year later, was lucky enough to become part of a great group of dedicated volunteer stewards working for Pathfinders Tours and The Torbay Express. My hobbies included railway photography and meeting new people."

 

 

Greg

"As a long standing customer of Pathfinder Tours, I recently started volunteering as a steward. I enjoy meeting the wide variety of customers which Pathfinder Tours attracts - no two people are ever the same! I enjoy travelling and enhancing my nationwide geographical route knowledge and in my opinion there is no better way to do so than in heritage carriages on locomotive hauled trains.

 

I work for Network Rail as a train running controller so the railway is in my blood, and has been since I was very young. In my spare time I play keys in a seven piece party band."

 

 

John

John.  ©Martin Treacher

"Over the years, as a long standing Pathfinder customer, I had occasionally carried out the odd casual stewarding duty, that was, until I was asked if I would like to volunteer as a steward for Pathfinder Tours and The Torbay Express. Fortunately coming from a railway family and having taken early retirement from a career in railway engineering, this wasn’t a problem; railways and travelling by train are in the blood. Every excursion is different, every destination is different, each one of the passengers is an individual, but the intention is always the same, to provide a memorable and enjoyable day out."

 

 

 

Lesley

Lesley.  ©

"I live in rural Wiltshire and I have recently retired as a post mistress. I have been stewarding for Pathfinder Tours since 2010. What I love most about being a steward is welcoming passengers and being able to share our wonderful days away with them. Many of our repeat passengers have now become friends. I am also steam train support crew for a number of the mainline engines. I spend much of my free time looking after my 4 beautiful grandchildren and keep fit with dance classes. I look forward to welcoming old and new passengers aboard on our railtours."

 

 

 

Martin

Martin.  © Andy Powis

"'The compulsive urge to travel is a recognised psychical condition. It has its own word, dromomania, and I’m glad to say I suffer from it.’ - wrote Michael Palin in 1989. I make no apology for admitting to a form of this condition for more years than I care to remember. Trains, planes and automobiles – and anything else for that matter – to places near and far, have always been firmly on my agenda. I look forward to welcoming you aboard a Pathfinder excursion, for whatever reason you choose. However, I cannot promise that Michael Palin will be there to keep you entertained!"

 

 

 

Nick

"I'm Nick and am fairly new to stewarding but have done many Pathfinder Tours excursions over the years. My first tour was in 1979. Im am now retired from Network Rail after 39 years of service - most of this time was spent as a mecanical signal engineer. I have lived in Devon most of my life, where we have the best of both worlds - the moors and the sea - and I like nothing better than taken my two dogs for long walks."

 

 

Nigel

Nigel.  © Martin Treacher

"Having been a traveller on Pathfinder/F&W for many years, I got involved with stewarding in 2005. I enjoy the way people from many varied backgrounds come together to help deliver a memorable day out for the customers. My railway interest was developed by my secondary school being right next to the Great Western Main Line, so break times were spent trainspotting! My main interests are diesel locomotives, particularly anything English Electric. I helped start the Fifty Fund, a class 50 preservation project and was secretary for 15 years. Away from the railway my day job is with a major drinks manufacturer in Mid-Somerset. My other hobbies involve following the (mis)fortunes of Yeovil Town Football Club and Somerset County Cricket Club."

 

Sarah

"Hello, I am Sarah, Mum to two grown up children, cake baker, gardener and travel enthusiast (whether it be boats, planes, trains or just plain walking!). I also play tennis socially and for a club side. I have spent most of my working life as an Intensive Care Nurse and still continue to do so. Good food and drinks are also an interest of mine and I can occasionally be found behind the bar at my local pub! I steward for both Pathfinder Tours and their sister company Torbay Express.