Everyone knows the Bluebell. It's all things to all men. If you're into railways, particularly steam railways, it's a must-visit. If you enjoy unspoilit countryside, social history, industrial archaeology, museums... it's for you. If you want to help "play" with it, the Preservation Society would welcome you with open arms. You'd soon discover that to "play" you need to learn a lot, ensure you can maintain safety - yours and others' - and get through a formal assessment.
Why the mention here? Richard is a volunteer Guard and occasional station Porter. It's a friendly, fascinating occupation; where almost all the people you meet are of a like mind and chat and banter are king.
Details of when, where and how are at the Bluebell website.
As well as paying for coal, water, maintenance, and so on your fare also be contributing toward the restoration of the collection of old locos and rolling stock. Some of the collection have been untouched since their rescue half a century or more ago. Every penny into the coffers goes toward this effort, once operational expenses have been paid.
Joining will get you reduced fares and a glow of contentment - after all, you're helping a massive restoration effort. It'll also give you the chance to come and "play" as mentioned before. That's where you really learn how a steam railway works and start understanding how the genuine railway fraternity built, a fraternity that is in evidence even in modern railway companies.